bottle of britain


Webster double scent-bottle percussion shotgun

Manufactured by Webster & Co. at 122 Regent Street, London c.first third of the 19th century.
16 gauge loose powder and shots, Forsyth’s scent-bottle percussion lock, twin side-by side smoothbore barrels with their respective triggers.

A scent-bottle lock, as designed more or less by reverend Alexander Forsyth in Scotland when he started to get annoyed by his game not being immediately shot by his flintlock hunting shotgun - it instead ran away when it heard the detonation in the pan, was a small bottle filled with mercury fulminate that when rotated a full turn would drop enough of it in front of the barrel’s touch hole. A captive firing pin would then be depressed by the hammer into the fulminate, setting off the gun.

This was before the percussion cap was invented by François Prélat in Paris and made thing a little simpler, but it did have the advantage of being very safe to carry around since the scent-bottle’s pin could rotate out of the hammer’s reach.

“Juliet, our love can never be…..your father collects cigarette packets, while mine collects computer game packaging.”

– Romeo & Juliet, Act II, scene I (first draft)

Hawkshead Grammar School

whoops…seems I already posted an earlier version of this months ago. Oh well, new perspective, right?


Forsyth lock pistol

Manufactured by Forsyth & Co. In London, United Kingdom c.1807~1810′s - serial numbers are overrated anyway.
.49 caliber twin smoothbore barrels, scent-bottle percussion lock, swivel ramrod and gold inlays.

A very rare type of lock, Forsyth’s design worked a bit like a rotating pez dispenser filled with mercury fulminate priming pellets.