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Handbook of the Enfield Pattern 1914 Rifle (1916)

Handbook of the Enfield Pattern 1914 Rifle (1916)

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Issued with Army orders
dated 1st July 1916

HMSO, London, 1916

Handbook of the Enfield Pattern 1914
is a very rare WW1 Musketry handbook published on 1st July 1916 - a very significant date for the British Army, the first day of the Battle of the Somme. It was a supplementary booklet to be used in conjunction with the standard army musketry manual, Musketry Regulations 1914. The booklet covers the essential details, mechanism, and maintenance instructions for the Enfield P14 .303 rifle. It is illustrated with line drawings of the rifle and its mechanism.

The Enfield pattern 1914 Rifle was developed from the experimental P13 rifle, which was a response to the highly accurate Mauser rifles used by the Boers in South Africa. The P14 was an advanced design for the time, said to be greatly superior to the Mauser. Compared to the Lee–Enfield Mk III SMLE the Pattern 1914 Enfield was more accurate and more durable. But it was heavier and had only half the magazine capacity of the SMLE, giving it a significantly lower effective rate of fire. The pre-WW1 professional British Army training emphasized the value of rapid-fire, resulting in the annual 'Mad Minute' qualification shoot for their riflemen. In contrast to the Boer War experience which had led to the P13/P14 project, World War I conditions favoured volume of fire, at which the Short Magazine Lee–Enfield excelled. As a consequence, the P14 was mainly deployed as a highly-accurate sniper rifle, and was prefered by British snipers over the less accurate SMLE. During WW2 the P14 would see service again with the British Home Guard.


In good condition. The paper cover is in fair to good condition, with general signs of use, some marks and some creases. The stapled binding is secure, although the original staples are rusty. The text and illustrations are in good condition, with some marks and some slight creasing.

Published: 1916
Paper cover with black titling
Illustrated with line drawings
Dimensions: 100mm x 130mm
Pages: 30