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Paradox gun: Wikis


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12 bore Paradox gun bullets, Hollow point (left) and Cross cut (right)

A Paradox gun is a firearm made by Holland & Holland with the last two inches of the muzzle rifled, intended to be used as both a rifle and shotgun. Paradox guns were meant to serve the needs of hunters in India and Africa who might encounter both small and large game but needed to carry only a single gun. A paradox gun allowed the use of standard shotgun shells for small game and Paradox bullets (shot with a spin from the rifling) for large game. Paradox cartridges have been loaded using either hollow point or solid bullets of varied composition. The current Holland & Holland cartridge is loaded with the most useful of these, the 740 grain lead solid.


The word "Paradox" has been used by Holland & Holland of London since 1886 to describe large bore guns with the last few inches of the barrel rifled with a special "ratchet" style of rifling. Holland & Holland purchased the rights to the Paradox gun in 1885 from Col George Vincent Fosbery VC,[1] who also invented the Webley-Fosbery Automatic Revolver. They chose the name "Paradox" because shotguns are defined by their smoothbore barrels, and a "rifled shotgun" was something of a contradiction in terms, i.e. a paradox. Holland & Holland's Paradox and Nitro-Paradox guns are not slug guns as they fire standard shotgun shells and cartridges with special Paradox bullets fully interchangeably. Over the years Holland & Holland manufactured Paradox guns in 20, 16, 12, 10, and 8 gauge sizes. Today they continue to manufacture Paradox guns of 12 gauge in the famous 'Royal' sidelock ejector as well as in their newer round action side-by-side gun.

Other manufacturers

Paradox type guns were manufactured by several firms in addition to Holland & Holland. Other firms in (Birmingham), England made them for sale under their own names and by others. For example, Westley Richards and G & S Holloway made versions. The latter made them under their own name that were privately marked for and purchased for sale by high end dealers such as P. Orr & Sons, a premier retailer of high-end jewelry, household items, furs, appliances and arms in Madras and Rangoon. Many had cut rifling that extended more than two inches into the muzzle(s) (3" -4" in some cases).




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