The Browning M1910 was the first mass-produced automatic rifle and the first to use gas as a propellant. It was also one of the most influential firearms in history, used by many armies around the world.

The Browning M1910 was the gun that started the Great War. The gun had a powerful magazine, which could hold up to 50 rounds of .30-06 ammunition.

The Browning M1910 isn’t as well-known as the Colt M1911 or the Luger, yet it fired one of history’s most significant shots.

Gavrilo Princip, a Bosnian Serb nationalist, shot Archduke Franz Ferdinand, Austria-heir Hungary’s presumptive to the throne, and his wife Sophie as their motorcade drove through Sarajevo on June 28, 1914, fatally injuring both.

This one act put in motion a chain reaction of political and military events that eventually led to World War I.

A. The mechanism of blowback. Because the slide is not secured to the breech when the M1910 is shot, the rearward gas pressure on the cartridge case cycles the weapon.

B. Attractions. With the sights placed in a groove carved along the top of the slide, the weapon’s realistic range is a little more than 30 yards.

C. Barrel is a fictional character. The pistol’s total length is just 6 inches, thanks to its 3 1/2-inch barrel.

“Triple Safety,” says D. Before the handgun may fire, a lever on the back of the grip must be depressed. There’s also an exterior safety lever and a magazine safety that prevents the gun from firing when the magazine is removed.

E. Magazine is a publication that publishes articles about a The magazine may carry either six or seven rounds of.380 or.32 ammo.

Princip’s weapon of choice, due to John Moses Browning’s inventiveness, was cutting edge for the time. Around 1896, Browning started designing magazine-fed “self-loading” (or semiautomatic) handguns and found a willing producer in Europe: Fabrique Nationale d’Armes de Guerre in Belgium.

The M1910 was a thin blowback handgun that came in both and chamberings. The only difference between the 380 ACP (917mm) and the.32 ACP (7.65 mm Browning Short) was the barrel.

The wraparound recoil spring was guided by the barrel, contributing to the gun’s slim appearance, and the M1910 was striker fired, with no external hammer.

Depending on the caliber, the magazine contained six or seven shots. (The Model 1910/22 had a longer barrel, a bigger grip frame, and two additional rounds in the magazine when it was released in 1922.)

The M1910 was manufactured until 1983, with over 700,000 units sold to the military, police, and civilian sectors. It was the ideal assassin’s weapon due to its small size.

The M1910 also took the life of French President Paul Doumer in May 1932 and Louisiana Governor Huey Long in September 1935. MHQ

Chris McNab is a military historian who lives in the UK. U.S. Supercarrier: Operations Manual is his most recent publication (Haynes Publishing, 2023).

With the headline: Weapons Check | The Browning M1910, this article appears in the Winter 2023 edition (Vol. 33, No. 2) of MHQ—The Quarterly Journal of Military History.

Do you want MHQ’s richly illustrated, high-quality print edition sent to your door four times a year? Now is a great time to subscribe and save!

The fn model 1922 was the first semi-automatic rifle that was used in WWI. It was also the most widely used firearm at the time.

Frequently Asked Questions

What gun killed Archduke Ferdinand?

The gun was a revolver and it was loaded with .44 caliber bullets.

Where is the gun that killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand?

The gun that killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand is in a museum in Austria.

Where is the gun that started ww1?

The gun that started WW1 was the Austro-Hungarian Empires Gewehr M.95, which was a semi-automatic rifle.

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