Mystery Item No. 3 – The Answer & Other Miscellanea

For those of you still wondering – well done to Andrew and in particular Walter – exactly what this little bottle is, let’s not string it out.  Here’s the answer. 

The crest on the bottle (honest Guv), and also on this button, is the double-headed eagle motif seen in the top right inset, and our little bottle is a Russian Imperial Army oil bottle for a Mosin-Nagant 1891 rifle, seen in the lower inset (and possibly, probably, somewhere in the world, responsible for someone’s death this very day, these rifles still to found in places you and I probably don’t wish to go to) and used by the Russians until the end of the Great War – that’ll be 1917 in their case, after which there was no Russian Imperial Army.

Once upon a time the bottle would have looked more like this; the C.O.3. is actually cyrillic denoting Sestroryetsk, a district of St. Petersburg on the banks of the Gulf of Finland, and the location of the Mosin Nagant factories during the Great War.  The crest is, of course, that of the Romanoffs, the Tsar & his family, to you and me.

The button with the crest – this is the reverse – is a typical Russian Imperial Army button, and as we are talking Russian buttons,…

…here are some more, the one in the centre again with the Romanoff crest, the two plain ones on either side at the bottom probably late war, because many of these I have seen have regimental numbers on them, the three at the top also metal, and well used, too.

Some Russian coins, while we’re at it, once more with the double-headed eagle on the obverse (left picture, easiest to see bottom right),…

…and some more, but I don’t think these are going to fit in any vending machine.

If you look carefully you can see that these two coins, for example, are completely fused together,…

…and the only thing that is going to make that happen is intense heat.  These items all came from a Russian Great War bunker in modern-day Latvia, and frankly, you have to hope that no Russian soldiers were present when whatever happened within took place, although where you find coins, you tend to find people.

A few other items from the Russian front; I recognise a spark plug, and a spoon, and buckle and an ammunition clip (to feed bullets into your rifle, or rifle magazine) at the bottom.  The rest, well, your guess is as good as mine.

And to finish, a, presumably, Russian bullet (close-ups below; again, any ideas from what?), a well-used nit comb (probably a louse comb in practise), and a thimble.

The stories they could tell.  Now, as we’re talking Russian artefacts, if anyone’s interested, I have a couple of Fabergé eggs I’m anxious to get rid of……

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4 Responses to Mystery Item No. 3 – The Answer & Other Miscellanea

  1. Andrew Brennan says:

    If it’s a Russian bullet, then it’s from a 7.62x54R cartridge. But the nose looks too rounded for one of those. I bet that the cartridge collectors will be able to help us out here.

    • Magicfingers says:

      It’s the roundedish end that has stymied me so far, although I am only trying to match it with photos. Maybe I should put it on an Ordnance Facebook site – I have added close-up pics at the end of this post, btw.

  2. Brian McTighe says:

    From seeing your last posts, Faberge eggs or Faberge grenades?!

  3. Magicfingers says:

    I’m afraid the Fabergé grenade was another Great War failure – apparently they worked okay, or would have, but they couldn’t find anyone who would actually let go……….

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