British Volunteer Rifled Cavalry Saddle Ring Carbine by Henry Nock
Model Pattern 1799, Issue Number 14 of 20 Made
The barrel, octagonal at breach is marked London NO. 14. Brass furniture with
triggerguard prominently marked CYC for "Yeomanry Company." The first 3.5 - 4" of the
28-inch, .75-caliber barrel is smoothbore; the remainder of the barrel to the breech is
rifled; view and proof marks present. Foresight is a robust conical bead; rear is a fixed
blade V-type site. The barrel displays shallow pitting and looks to have been refinished.
The bore is bright and crisp. The walnut full stock fitted with saddle sling baris marked
with British military acceptance on left side. Unique Yeomanry ramrod original to this
carbine. The action is tight and smooth. The bolted lock with swan-neck cock is
marked H. Nock. All parts appear to be original including original heavy ramrod; swollen
near head to secure in stock, brass cupped end, fully slit stock with ramrod end fitting
into a tail pipe formed by the trigger guard finial. The overall condition is good even with
shallow pitting which because of barrel color does not distract.
The "C/YC" has long been thought of as the Castlemartin Yeomanry Cavalry, the first
Volunteer Cavalry regiment to win a battle honor, "Fishguard", by participating in 1797
in repelling a French invasion force which landed at Fishguard, Pembrokeshire.
Yeomanry, Fencibles, and Militia skirmished with the French who soon decided that
discretion was the better part of valor - they had invaded believing that England was in a
state of insurrection and that they would lead a large mob in a march on London. When
it proved to be otherwise, the French surrendered at Goodwin Sands, ending the last
invasion of the British mainland.
Another possible meaning of C / YC is Cobham Yeomanry Cavalry, in Kent. The
Royal Armories have an identical example of this Nock carbine which came from the
sale of Cobham Hall, seat of the Earls of Darnley; the family was forced to sell in 1957,
victims of death duties and taxes. During the late 18th century, it was in the Darnley’s
best interest, and they could afford to raise and equip a troop of Yeomanry Cavalry; the
Cobham Yeomanry Cavalry was formed in 1794.