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photograph of current display in the Grand Vestibule

A display highlighting the interaction between the monarchy and the wider world


Pair of pistols 1805

RCIN 62929

Grand Vestibule, Windsor Castle

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In the Balkans, pistols of this kind were called zlatka after the Serbo-Croat word for ‘golden’.  Almost the entirety of the stock is covered with gilded silver sheet. Miniscule flowers, birds, drums, cannon, trophies, weapons and garlands are embossed and chiselled into the metal. The bulbous grips are particularly ornate because they would be visible when the pistols were worn thrust into the leather belt called a selachi. The lockplate is marked ‘Rossi’, suggesting that the locks may have been imported from Italy. In this period, numerous firearms were purchased from across Europe to supply the Balkan resistance to Ottoman forces.