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‘Quite astounding’ Antiques Roadshow expert left gobsmacked over value of Italian pistol

Antiques Roadshow: A look at Italian pistol

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During Sunday night’s instalment of Antiques Roadshow, BBC viewers were taken to Surrey to see a range of unique items valuated by the show’s experts. In the episode, Robert Tiley was gobsmacked when a guest brought an antique worth up to £20,000.

Inspecting the handheld pistol, Robert was instantly stunned over the item that an elderly gentleman had brought him.

Calling the antique “quite astounding”, he assured the man it was not a copy and was a genuine Italian pistol.

Wanting to find out more about how the guest received it, the gentleman explained he was given it by his stepfather.

He told Robert: “It was a gift from one of his business partners and later on, he wasn’t interested, so I received it from him.”

Inspecting the handheld pistol, Robert was instantly stunned over the item that an elderly gentleman had brought him.

Calling the antique “quite astounding”, he assured the man it was not a copy and was a genuine Italian pistol.

Wanting to find out more about how the guest received it, the gentleman explained he was given it by his stepfather.

He told Robert: “It was a gift from one of his business partners and later on, he wasn’t interested, so I received it from him.”

The expert highlighted he must have been interested in the antique as he believed it had had some work done to it.

Replying, the guest said: “I was 17 or 18, I dry fired it and broke bits and pieces of it. I had it repaired later on.”

Re-emphasising the piece was genuine, the antique expert told him it was a top-quality presentation piece.

He also warned it was not something that was to be played with. 

Robert said: “It’s Italian, it’s out of Turin. It’s probably 1770, 1780.”

Giving the item a closer look, viewers got to see the pistol close up as Robert told the guest a bit more about what his stepfather had given him.

He said: “I mean if you start going back from the muzzle, you have this fabulous burst of gold here, gold chasing. 

“The two cartouches are the Turin-proof marks. This is silver inlay work of the finest possible quality.”

The Antiques Roadshow expert added: “A superb lion mask here with gilt round it.”

He then told the guest if the pistol were to come onto the auction market, it would be worth a price of around £15,000 to £20,000.

Stunned, the guest gasped as he said: “Wow.”

Continuing, Robert said: “It is just a fabulous piece.

“Not something that a small boy should have played with, but we’ll forgive you. It’s wonderful, thanks so much for bringing it in.”

Elsewhere in the episode, two other guests were told their antique would fetch the same price of £20,00 by Bunny Campione.

The expert informed the sisters the doll they had been given by their mother was, in fact, a funeral effigy.

She said: “I must admit that this is the most interesting and unusual doll that I’ve seen in my 36 years of Roadshow.”

Antiques Roadshow airs on Sundays on BBC One at 8pm

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