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Weapons Collection

The beginnings of the weapons collection within the Banat Museum in Timişoara are closely related to the first years of existence of the History and Archeology Society of Timişoara, a society founded in 1872 at the initiative of the Banat cultural-scientific elite.

The historical weapons collection of the Timişoara Museum today includes several hundred pieces, most of the objects coming from the old collection of the museum (period 1872-1914), where they arrived as a result of donations, acquisitions, archaeological discoveries or after the exchange of objects, a practice existing in the first years of the Society.

The collection of knives, more numerous and spectacular than that of firearms, falls chronologically between the sec. the 10th and the years of the Second World War, including the whole range of weapons: military, civilian, parade, hunting, fencing, etc.

The collection of firearms temporarily covers the time period between sec. XVI and the First World War. The firearms from the patrimony of the Banat Museum are of several types: military, civilian, hunting, shooting, etc.

Regarding the space of origin of the weapons in the collection, the vast majority of military pieces are of Central European origin. A special category is represented by the Balkan and Turkish pieces, quite numerous, represented especially by the yataghans. Most of the Balkan weapons are captured during the Austrian military campaign in Bosnia in the summer of 1878.

The parade swords are of Hungarian and Austrian origin, and the hunting weapons are overwhelmingly Austrian in nature. Among the exotic pieces we mention the existence of a significant number of Asian and African weapons.

Regarding the classification of firearms according to the firing mechanism, the vast majority of them are flint weapons, followed by those with percussion (staple) and to a lesser extent with weapons with central percussion.

Among the most valuable pieces in the collection are: the executioner sword of the city of Timisoara, a medieval Viking sword, the yataghan who belonged to the leader of the Serbian anti-Ottoman movement Đorđe Petrović “Karađorđe”, the sword of the Austrian general Johann Freiherz family an Italian helmet of the Morion type from the 15th century. 16th century, an arquebus dating from the 16th century. XVI-XVII, a trombone rifle from the sec. XVIII, a compressed air weapon of the Girandoni type from the turn of the century. XVIII-XIX, a Balkan rifle of the džeferdar type from sec. XVIII-XIX, hunting rifles made in the Viennese workshop “Fruwirth” (early nineteenth century), “pipettes” type Mariette, etc.

The collection of firearms also includes two cannons: a mobile, assault, made in Resita and used during the Revolution of 1848-1849 and a fixed, Austrian, battlement, originally located on one of the gates of the city of Timisoara.

The most representative pieces of the weapons collection were published in two specialized catalogs: Zoran Markov, Dragutin Petrović, Cold Arms, Vršac, 2012 and Zoran Marcov, Sergiu Galiş, Pistols and revolvers – Weapons collection of the Banat Museum Timisoara, Timisoara, 2014.

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