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This book shows the reader over 500 longarms of all types from the early flintlocks of the revolutionary period, the percussion cap rifles and repeaters of the Civil War, the famous rifles and shotguns of the Wild West, the standard infantry rifles of two World War, to the present day with Assault Rifles, and combat shotguns, together with state of the art sporting rifles and shotguns.

Each entry has a clear color photograph of the gun together with a description and a technical specification. It is arranged alphabetically within five historical periods: Historic, Civil War, The Frontier, Two World Wars, and Modern, plus a separate comprehensive Shotgun section. A "rifled" firearm is one in which the projectile is made to spin as it travels up the bore. The term "rifle" however, was originally applied to muskets to differentiate them from the earlier smoothbore weapons and is used today to designate the infantryman's personal weapon, fired from the shoulder or the hip, or, in some modern weapons, from a bipod.