UPDATED on August 2, 2020
In 1798, two young men make a chance encounter at sea off Cuba. Both are influenced by the social ideas of the time. Both will have a great career.
The duc d'Orléans, proscribed from France as the son of a régicide, is sailing with his two younger brothers on an uncomfortable American ship. A British boat offers to take them. The duc falls into the water and swims to the stern. He is welcomed aboard by a Scottish sailor.
Thomas Cochrane, later Lord Cochrane and Earl of Dundonald, will be a very effective captain, promoter of chemical warfare and pioneer of the steam military navy. His radical commitment made him an enfant terrible of the British navy, and he was to become a hero of the liberation of South America and Greece. He is pardoned in 1832 by the new king William IV.
The duc d'Orléans, who became in 1830 Louis-Philippe I roi des Français, remembers his friend. In 1843 he presents him with a cased pair of luxurious percussion pistols manufactured by Jules Manceaux in Paris. The guns are inlaid in fine gold instead of the more usual damascening of the time.
This set of royal quality is estimated $ 120K for sale by RIAC in Rock Island on September 13, 2020, lot 3262. One of the tweets below was issued before this lot passed at RIAC on September 12, 2015, lot 1163.
This pair of pistols is the witness not only of a lasting Franco-Scottish friendship but also of the evolution of the political sensitivities in the first half of the nineteenth century.
SOLD for $ 140K before fees