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The Martini-Henry MK IV, also known as the Mk IV Humpback, came at an important juncture in British military history, the search for a faster, smaller caliber round and the rise of the bolt action rifle. The MK IV was part of the former and therefore originally designed for a .402 caliber round, slightly slimer than the .450 caliber round of the MK I, II, and III rifles. As production of the Mk IVs began, the British military saw its future in the far superior .303 caliber and the Lee-Metford bolt action rifle. Not interested in the logistics of supplying ammunition of a wide range of calibers, the British eliminated the .402 caliber and ordered the existing MK IVs converted back to .450 caliber.
As a result of the conversion process, Martini-Henry MK IV rifles are divided in the Patterns A, B, and C (note that these divisions come from the collector world and not the British military). Pattern A and B are converted .402 caliber rifles and Pattern C are newly assembled rifles (an emphasis must be placed on ‘newly assembled’ as these rifles were a mixture of new and old parts). These rifles have a long, distinguished history of service in the Empire and colonies.
The Enfield manufactured Martini-Henry MK IV rifle seen here is in good condition. With the forearm off, cosmoline is visible on the underside of the barrel. The stock has service marks and many unit, proof, and service stamps, including the Madras Arsenal roundel which proves service in the Indian colonial forces. Many crisp proof and inspection marks are found on various metal parts. The receiver is marked ‘crown/V.R./Enfield/1887/crown-arrow/IV/1’. Barrel, left side under the rear sight, is marked ‘NS/NEP’, which indicates this rifle was passed to Nepal after service in India. Serial numbers on the front side of the receiver and Knox form match. The action functions as intended, as does the cocking indicator. The bore is very good, clean, bright, with good rifling. Chambered in .577-.450 caliber
Antique. See pictures for overall condition. Check with a local FFL dealer to confirm your state laws governing ownership of an antique rifle before purchasing this item.
Martini-Henry MK IV
very good, clean, bright, with well-defined rifling