A bit of casual research into the common 18th and early 19th century image often used as a motif for engraving on guns, mostly on pistols as long guns tended to have sporting images, but it was used on butt tangs, Trigger bows and lock tails of ‘bullet guns’ and sporting guns occasionally – it comes in various guises, including ‘Stand of Music’ with the weapons missing and sheet music featuring prominently. The origin appears to be Hogarth’s engraving of around 1746, although whether he used an already common theme I don’t know ( he did, see below). This is the start of a collection of related gun engravings, that I’ll add to as more examples cross my path.
Here is the original engraving from Hogarth, reproduced from Wikimedia Commons
Here are a couple of earlier examples;-
This is an illustration from 1714 it has all the elements of Hogarth’s version.
This memorial dates from 1704
Click to see more………………..
This is a pull from William Palmer from the late 18th century, sans the arms – its not clear that this was intended for a gun.
This is another Palmer pull, from the butt tang of a long gun – only the shield with a Union flag is used.
.Lock of a small pocket pistol signed H Nock, probably post 1800 – the ‘shield becomes a place for the name, and the banners make up the rest, but the double ‘streamers’ on the banners are characteristic, as are the random ‘leaves’ – very easy to cut and very effective!
This is the tail of Robin’s Joe Manton lock and what got me thinking about the ‘stand’. It doesn’t have the banners but the shield with a suggestion of the union flag is there, and the axe is the only weapon present. I guess it qualifies as a ‘Stand of Music’ rather than a Stand of Arms.
Here is a small Stand of Arms (strictly a Stand of Music) I did for the breech block of Fred’s gun No 2 – it follows on from the engraving of the banner on the centre of the breech block – see Engraving Lettering for more pics and details of tools etc…
Here is another one I’ve just done (March 2019) for a sideplate for a new Fred gun based on a pull from a 1770 gun that he sent me, with a bit of poetic licence thrown in;-