Something of a Mystery: Rimfire 1874 Gasser Montenegrin

This revolver is a bit of a mystery. It is a Gasser-produced, Montengrin pattern model 1874, but it has been converted to use rimfire cartridges – and the specific caliber of rimfire cartridge is unclear. This specific example was proofed in Vienna in 1905, making it a very late-production example. It would have been originally made as a centerfire revolver using the Werndl carbine cartridge, and why it would be downgraded, so to speak, to rimfire is a mystery…


  1. A revolver with the serial number 171290 in a museum in Amman, Jordan;;AWE;jo;74;en
    As Ian indicated the arab letters point at the Ottoman empire. Then there is this one:
    Serial number 176313, also with the same arab letters – this time adopted to .455 calibre.
    They could have been captured by the Ottomans in the Balkan wars (used by Montenegro and Serbia). Small arms were in high demand back then, so they would’ve been put to use.

  2. As far as the “arab” letters go… I would think those are two letters (as used in the Ottoman Turkish alphabet) an initial elif with a following ze, so that would be a + z or “az”, as this was written from right to left. So you would have to look it from the muzzle. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

  3. This is speculation :
    If I properly followed (and remember) the discussion in this website comments about lever action carbine by Ottomans during Russo-Turkish war, they used a rimfire variant. There might be a probability to have this Gasser adapted to use the same ammunition.

    • Intersection of Ottoman Empire and around 1905 year inevitably lead to another earlier examined weapon, namely Conehammer
      which has interesting historical tidbit
      Under the Sultan’s rule, there was significant concern over potential military coups, and most arms were locked away in armories, including many of the C96 pistols. After the revolution in 1908/9, guns were more liberally distributed to the military and police

  4. The meaning of the small mark stamped on the cylinder (looks like C with dot) is arabic for Army. It is the first character of ge’ez meaning Army. see page 55: Ken Elks, Ammunition with Turkish and Arabic Markings, Canterbury, Kent, UK: Solo Publications, 2016, spiral-bound, This is my revolver, and I look forward to comments on the caliber and user.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.