On the face of it, the word “best” s a simple meaning: Traditionally, it was the top-grade gun built by a manufacturer. But in an era when guns were almost entirely hand made, quality varied, and some best guns were best-er than others.
Check out this H&H Royal to see what I mean. I don’t know who they made this gun for or why they did such a nice job on it, but it’s one of the finest Holland & Holland Royal I’ve seen.
The Royal is Holland & Holland’s flagship gun. They’ve been building it since the 1890s, and it has been copied by countless makers in the UK to Spain, Germany, and Japan.
The engraving pattern on this gun is the company’s famous acanthus-scroll (inspired by the work of textile designer William Morris), but it’s executed a higher level than what you see on your average Royal. Everything is done a bit better, too. The action is a bit crisper, the wood a bit more elegant, the checkering a bit more careful. Overall, it’s a stunning gun.
HOLLAND & HOLLAND – ROYAL SXS 10 BORE
#23367. 31″ NITRO PROOFED STEEL BARRELS 2 7/8″ CHAMBERS, PROOFED FOR 1 1/2 OZ, DOUBLE TRIGGER, EJECTOR, SPLINTER FOREARM, ENGLISH GRIP, MINT CONDITION, ORIGINAL, OAK AND LEATHER MAKERS CASE, 9LBS 4 OZ, 2 1/4″ DAH, 1 1/2″ DAC, 14 3/4″ LOP. PRICE: $49,500