Historic and Vintage Rigby Rising Bite .470 NE Double Rifle

Discussion in 'Double Rifles' started by vette447, Aug 2, 2019.

  1. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    I have one more that I think you guys may appreciate:

    This is a J Rigby & Co Rising Bite double rifle in .470 NE. It was made in 1905 as a 450 3-1/4" and sold to Col PB Osborne. Later it was sold back to Rigby and then was purchased in 1933 by famed British Explorer and author Sir Wilfred Thesiger ( https://www.britannica.com/biography/Wilfred-Thesiger ). In his book the Danakil Diaries, he writes of going to Rigby's and his mother purchasing this rifle for him. I believe it is written about other time and there are also pictures of him published with this rifle as well as one particular picture of one of his trusted companions holding this rifle and posing with a Lioness that he shot. It also has his crest in the medallion on the stock. At some point, likely in the 1960s he had the rifle re-barreled by Rigby to 470 NE. I am still gathering information on him and his life and how this rifle is tied to him. He was knighted in 1995 and his archive was left to the nation of Great Britain and is housed in the Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford.

    I can't describe how good it feels in the hands, it is slim and trim and shoulders soo nicely. It shoots well with Federal Premium and Hornady factory ammo. I definitely plan to use this after bog game in Africa the next time I am able to go back. These pics don't really do it justice but will help you get the idea:

    13D92B37-2A4F-4DFA-ACAB-6843C3AF9DC7_zpsuvxfadr3.jpg 31F5C6C4-22CB-4788-B5C1-26DF1DBE3B2D_zpskesd9rmw.jpg 6042C81F-90D2-4BCF-AF59-085DAA906B69_zpstrl4wq1q.jpg 7727F2EB-A78F-424C-B6E7-0BC07E487037_zpsno48ipej.jpg A03AE96F-C465-488F-9F67-A2CEF9E8C6F6_zpslentgunw.jpg E7A896A6-9893-4102-BD40-8115671886E5_zps8mjk4gsb.jpg B2B1D2AA-2C40-488F-9D5D-CC8B9B70A7D3_zpsv9ysirne.jpg E7AFC2F9-54C2-4F24-9DC2-31D4701499D0_zpsy0fwbfsg.jpg 73DD64FE-0EAF-45B8-A092-494969956FCA_zpsihmpusnb.jpg 08FB0B70-8A39-409A-8779-E34EC864D9FF_zpsth8e4p1d.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 3, 2019
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  2. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    Thank you. The rifle is fabulous, but Sir Wilfred Thesiger is one of my real heroes. Back in the Early eighties, I went through the training associated with becoming a US Army Foreign Area Officer/ Middle East. I studied Arabic at the Defense Language Institute and the Arab Peninsula dialect at the Foreign Service Institute followed eventually by a Fellowship at the Walsh School, Contemporary Arab Studies, Georgetown University. As a young man, Lawrence’s “Seven Pillars of Wisdom” awoke my interest in the Arab World. In the early eighties I discovered Thesiger - one of those incredible Englishmen in the mold of Lawrence, Baker, Stanley, et al. A real regret is that I never met him. As I am sure you know, he only died a little over a decade ago. You have custodianship of a real treasure.
     
    Last edited: Aug 2, 2019
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  3. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    Red Leg, thank you for sharing all of your experience and the addition information about Sir Thesiger.

    I do feel like I have custodianship of something special and feel lucky to have been able to find/land it (with some help from a friend). I really hope to get to use it on some big game in the next few years.
     
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  4. sierraone

    sierraone AH ENABLER SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    @vette447 . I am happy for you that you were able to acquire such a rifle, but more importantly you are planning to continue using the rifle for which it was built! And that will be something to brag about!
     
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  5. gizmo

    gizmo AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2015 AH Ambassador

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  6. CAustin

    CAustin AH ENABLER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Ambassador

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    WOW a beautiful rifle
     
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  7. Mort Hill

    Mort Hill GOLD SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Superb. I live through gentlemen like you who share your treasures!
     
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  8. K-man

    K-man AH Elite

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    Beautiful firearm and amazing history! I almost had to wipe the drool off of the screen! Congratulations
     
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  9. Wheels

    Wheels AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Vette, congratulations on Thesiger's 470. It is really cool having a rifle with provenance like this.

    The following is a story you might be interested in since you have this rifle.

    Some friends from my youth, were hunting/camping in northern Tanzania. A white man walked into camp with a couple of servants. My friends invited him to dinner and the man ate with them and they talked for awhile before he left to set up camp a little ways from them. His name meant nothing to my friends. When asked, he talked about walking and exploring all over Arabia, Ethiopia and Kenya.

    When my friends met up again with their father, they told him about this man named Thesiger. Their father proceeded to tell them that Thesiger's uncle was Viceroy of India, and other things about the family. They were surprised just thinking he was a poor man who couldn't afford a vehicle so he walked to explore.
     
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  10. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    That is a great story. Thank you for sharing.

    How great it would have been to be hunting and camping in Tanzania on its own but then to have a interesting gent like Thesiger come into camp and visit and tell stories would have been fascinating
     

  11. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Most of the pix dont show.. red X's.
     

  12. Witold Krzyżanowski

    Witold Krzyżanowski AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Beautiful double rifle. I envy you.
     

  13. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Vette447, please try to post the photos again. For some reason, most of them were not included, but rather "Xed" out. BTW thanks for sharing photos of your gorgeous rifles with us. With or without any associated history they are magnificent examples of yesteryears craftsmanship.
     

  14. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    Hmm. I will try it again. I see the x’s now too but when I go to the “edit” function, they show up just fine. Let me see
     

  15. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    Now the "edit" button is gone. How do I get an admin to help me with the pictures? Sorry for that.
     

  16. meigsbucks

    meigsbucks AH Fanatic

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    A beautiful rifle with a great history. You are very fortunate to not only possess it but to be able to hunt with it.
     

  17. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Brickburn and or Jerome please help Vette447 post his pictures. thanks
     

  18. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com AH ENABLER FOUNDER AH Ambassador

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    Fixed.
     
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  19. vette447

    vette447 AH Enthusiast

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    Thank you Jerome. I am not sure why I sometimes have trouble like that. Maybe the photobucket links are problematic?
     

  20. Shootist43

    Shootist43 AH ENABLER GOLD SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Vette447, THAT is yet another masterpiece. If you keep on acquiring "specimens" like these two, pretty soon we are going to have to have a contest or at least a show and tell between you and Red Leg to see who owns the most beautiful rifles. :rolleyes::rolleyes: I understand that the word most (when used in this context) can be interpreted in more than one way.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2019
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