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wood, iron, koftgari
late 18th to early 19th C.
Bundelkhand, late 18th century
This gun is part of the Toradar family but scarcer and sometimes refered to as a 'Banduka' or 'Bandook'. While it is a toradar it sets itself apart from most toradars of the same family through some destinct design characteristics: the heavy barrel with its lotus shaped muzzle, the swollen breech section, the slightly curved stock with rounded butt, the somptuous trigger. All pieces I've seen share these same characteristics making it plausible that both barrel and stock are part of one integral design.
Our example has a three-stage barrel measuring 134 cm and shows traces of koftgari work on all metal parts. No metal side lock plates but the pricker holder is present. The rosewood stock with ebony breech and butt cap. The first with traces of tampering. The initial rattan barrel bands have been replaced with 10 iron bands. The ramrod is a replacement. Total length 188 cm. A modest version of a great gun. Good condition. Minor dents and some old repairs. These guns are linked to the Mughals and Mahratta's. Based on the provenance from the examples in the Sandringham House these guns probably originate from the Madhya Pradesh region.
'Robert Elgood, 'Firearms of the Islamic World', p. 154 - 155
Lord Egerton of Tatton, Indian and Oriental armour, p 165 plate VI fig. 18; 'pair of matchlocks, Bundelkhand'
Egerton, Wilbraham, An illustrated handbook of Indian arms; being a classified and descriptive catalogue of the arms exhibited at the India museum: with an introductory sketch of the military history of India, London, 1880p.118
Lord Egerton of Tatton, Indian and Oriental Armour, London, 1896, p. 118, Cat. No. 549
Similar examples in Museum collections
V&A Museum, Matchlock gun (toradar), made in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh, accession number 2622(IS),
V&A Museum, three matchlock guns (toradar), made in Indore, accession number 2618(IS), 2620(IS), 2623(IS)
Horniman Museum & Gardens, London, accession number nn7828, nn11201
Musée des Beaux-Arts de Lyon, 'Mousquet à mèche dit "Toradar"', inventory nr. X 522-2
Grand Palais (Musée du Louvre), a 'Toradar', inventory nr. R802, a long-term loan from the FNAGP - Fondation Salomon de Rothschild, Paris
Matchlock gun (toradar) nineteenth century, inventory number RCIN 38205. Ballroom, Sandringham House. Presented to King Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, during his tour of India in 1875-76.
Another gun in the ballroom of Sandringham House. Inventory number RCIN 37977. Presented to King Edward VII, when Prince of Wales, during his tour of India in 1875-76 by Rudra Pratap Singh, Maharaja of Panna.
Another gun refered to as 'Mahratta' in the ballroom of Sandringham House. Presented by H.H. the Maharaja Holkar of Indore. Inventory number RCIN 38139.
Prince of Wales Museum (now known as Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya) Sir Dorabji Tata and Sir Ratan Tata Collection.
Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad, India
Maharaja Chhatrasal Museum
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