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Sharpshooting For War and Defence (1914)

Sharpshooting for War and Defence (1914)

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W. W. Greener


'The importance of rifle shooting cannot well be overestimated, the rifle now being what the bow once was—the weapon with which battles are won.'

A very rare 1914 edition of this classic rifle shooting handbook, written by W. W. Greener and published at the start of WW1. W. W. Greener was recognised as one of the foremost British gunsmiths of the time and an authority on rifles and shooting. The book includes details of shooting with the standard British army service rifles of the time: the Martini-Henry and the Lee-Enfield. Fully illustrated throughout with excellent detailed line drawings and photographs, Sharpshooting for War covers all aspects of shooting, from choosing a rifle and ammunition, to ballistics, marksmanship and competition shooting.

William Wellington Greener (1834-1921) was a member of the Greener family of gun makers. His father, William Greener set up his own gun making business in Newcastle in 1829, moving the business to Birmingham in 1844. William Greener Snr. was a prolific inventor and over his lifetime he invented the expansive bullet (1835); an electric light (1846); a device to open the gates of a railway level crossing simultaneously; a self-righting lifeboat (1851) and modifications to the Miners Safety Lamp. But first and foremost he was a gun maker and the quality of his guns attracted many rich and famous customers, including Prince Albert, consort to Queen Victoria. At The Great Exhibition of 1851 he won two gold medals and a diploma "for guns and barrels, perfectly forged and finished" - the highest honour obtainable. William wrote three books, The Gun (1834), The Science of Gunnery (1846) and Gunnery (1858).

After William's death in 1869, his second son, William Wellington Greener, continued to make high quality sporting and military guns. Like his father, he was also an inventor and many of his inventions helped to shape the breech-loader, which by that time was developing into the modern sporting gun. W. W. Greener was also a prolific author, his published works included The Gun and its Development (1881), The Breechloader and How to Use it (1892), and Sharpshooting for Sport and War (1900). By the turn of the century, W. W. Greener had the world's largest sporting gun factory, employing over four hundred and fifty skilled craftsmen. In 1910 W. W. Greener's sons, Harry and Charles, took over the business and during WW1 production was switched to military requirements for the duration of the war.


In good condition. The card cover is in fair to good condition, with general signs of wear, creases, wear to the spine, and some marks. The binding and hinges are secure The text and illustrations are in good condition with some marks, and some slight rippling of the paper towards the page edges.

Published: 1914
Illustrated card cover
Dimensions: 125mm x 185mm
Pages: 228