Original Rare British Napoleonic P-1777 Royal Navy Sea Service Brown Bess Flintlock “Nelson Musket”

Item Description

Original Item: One of a Kind. This is a fantastic condition example of a P-1777 Sea Service Brown Bess Flintlock Musket, intended for use by the Royal Navy. Often called the "Nelson Musket", these were designed and requested specifically per the wishes of Horatio Nelson. While many larger ships did have a contingent of Royal Marines aboard, these were not intended for their use, but instead for general use by the sailors on board. They were kept in racks below decks, and were deployed when needed.  Usually a certain portion of the crew, around 150 on a 1st Rate Ship, were expected to be well versed in musket firing, and would be deployed in ranks to repel boarders.

The design arrived upon is a somewhat simplified version of the standard musket of the line. The shorter length made it easier to maneuver than a full length musket, which was not needed in close quarters anyway. This example has the correct 37 inch long barrel, and an overall length of 53 inches.

The Lock is a a correct late 18th century model, marked TOWER but without a date, as in 1764 the use of maker names and dates on locks was made obsolete. It has the "bridle" support for the frizzen, correct for the 1777 pattern. The lock plate is marked with the correct correct CROWN / GR proof, as well as the "Lock Viewer's" marking. The barrel is marked with several proofs, including the CROWN / GR, as well as several others we cannot quite make out. There are also proof marks stamped into the wood in various places

The stock is a lovely "bannister rail" style, with the beveled area surrounding the barrel tang. All of the fittings are brass, including the correct sea service trigger guard, not inlet into the stock with a rounded front tang. The butt stock is protected by a lovely bent sheet brass butt plate. This pattern does not have a nose cap or lower ramrod pipe, and the front pipe is fitted with the correct "tail spring" to retain the ramrod.

The condition of this rare musket is very nice, with a lovely patina on the metalwork, and fantastic condition stock. The ramrod channel even still has a proof mark stamped in it, as well as some assembly markings. both sling swivels are present, as is the original ramrod. The lock functions correctly, holding at half cock and firing at full. Just a lovely and rare musket.

A fantastic example of a very hard to find Sea Service "Nelson Musket", ready to research and display!


Year of Manufacture: c. 1790
Caliber: .80" Musket
Ammunition Type: Lead Ball & Powder
Barrel Length: 37 inches
Overall Length: 53 inches
Action: Flintlock
Feed System: Muzzle-Loaded

NOTE: International orders of antique firearms MUST be shipped using UPS WW Services (courier). USPS Priority Mail international will not accept these.

  • This product is available for international shipping.
  • Not eligible for payment with Paypal or Amazon


Cash For Collectibles