French Pattern An 9
by the Imperial Arms Factory
Overall: 1,519 mm, Barrel: 1,135 mm, Calibre: 17.8 min
Cf. HV - 177 in this entry and very nearly conforming to the French An 9 (Sept. 1800-Aug. 1801) pattern, however, the exterior of the plate struck 'BM' over the engraved signature Mur r=e imp le / de Mutzig in script-letters, and with a jaw-screw of incorrect shape (replacement).
Same as HV-177, but with the year '1777' in the pattern designation on the strap stamped rather than engraved and the whole designation partly obliterated by a filed sighting-groove; breech struck on top with what appears to be the mark of a tiny five-petalled flower, with 'BA', again partly obliterated by the aforementioned groove, and with the year '1800'.
Same as HV- 177, but with different marks: a 'V' struck behind the breech-strap and on the right butt face, branded in the wood, a very large 'C', and the circular general acceptance stamp marked: B-C (name of the first controller), JULIET, 1806 (the month and year the assembled gun was taken into service) and B (inspector's initial), all surrounding the large central initials RF (for Républigue Française); between the 'B' and '1806' is the same flower mark as on the barrel.
As HV-177, including the steel ramrod; many mounts are stamped with the instructor's mark of a 'V'; the sideplate and trigger-guard each carry a 'B'.
(MAKER) The factory at Mutzig in northern France was, according to Boudriot one of ten which together produced the 2,243,000 muskets and musketoons as well as 203,000 pairs of pistols of this pattern alone between 1803 and 1814, not counting 800,000 guns of the identical pattern which had been made previously.
(MARKS) An explanation of the general acceptance mark on the butt is given by Boudriot. It is not known what the large 'C' in the butt stands for. The initials 'R.F' for République Francaise are in fact an anomaly for a gun accepted in 1806, when France had already been an empire for two years. In theory, the central initials should have been 'E. F', for Empire Francaise.
(HISTORY / USE) According to the seller, this particular musket should be linked with the Dutch Army, which could either have been that of the Kingdom of Holland (1806 - 1810) under King Louis Napoleon, or of the period 1810 - 1813 when the Netherlands were, in fact, part of the French Empire and the army absorbed into the Imperial Army. Although there is, in this particular case, no corroborative evidence, it is a historical fact that the National (or Royal) Gun Factory at Culemborg, which also produced the musket of the An 9 pattern, could not meet the demands of the Dutch army at the time, as Van der Sloot has explained.
(OBSERVATIONS) For a description of the bayonet belonging to this musket, cf. Cat. 623 (HV - 1022).
-Boudriot, Cahier No. 3 : Système An 9 & 13 (i961) p. 8, pl. 1
-Van der Sloot (1973) p. 76