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“There can be no question that probably the deadliest handgun ever was the Model 1910 7.65mm (.32 ACP) FN Browning auto pistol used by Bosnian anarchist Gavrilo Princip to assassinate heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, Archduke Franz Ferdinand,” states, brooking no opposition. Negating debate. Strangling discussion in its metaphorical crib. No question. Probably. “Princip ambushed the archduke and his entourage on June 28, 1914 in Sarajevo, killing him and his wife Sophie. This sparked off a series of events resulting in World War I and military and civilian casualties totaling some 37,000,000.” Although I own a Colt 1903 (the 1910’s predecessor), I’d still rank my FN SCAR as a deadlier weapon. But then, gunsandammo would probably call me a hopeless pedant. Or vice versa.

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  1. Or, if Gavrilo Princip’s aim had been a few inches lower, Guns & Ammo might retrospectively call this pistol an “underpowered might-have-been.” The Archduke was wearing a hand-woven bullet-resistant vest, made of silk by a Catholic priest. No-one ever accused the .32 ACP of being overpowered, and the Archduke’s vest may very well have stopped such a marginally-powered round. Unfortunately, he was shot in the neck.

  2. WOW, I just used the edit feature for the first time and I LOVE IT. Keep up the good work RF because I’m sure I’ll be using it again and again and…….

  3. I’d bet Franz wouldn’t have guessed in a million years that he’d get a band named after him ninety years after his assassination.

  4. The other argument that you could make is that John Moses Browning started and stopped the World Wars. The archduke was killed with a .32ACP and Hitler committed suicide with a .32ACP. (I believe it was a Walther.)

  5. ‚ÄúThere can be no question that probably” is a rather odd construction, don’t you think? It’s like saying “certainly, the deadliest handgun might have been ….” Methinks our friends were hedging their bets. Or else they need an edit function. Or an editor. Or something.

  6. Whenever I see posts/stories about the ‘deadliest’ gun, I always posit that the lowly Nagant revolver is probably the arm with the highest body count. Of course, most of those were point blank to the back of the head.

    • Seriously, Jackson? I’d bet you’re that dude who drools at the thought of the gold-plated version too. As far as the original post, the Avtomat Kalashnikov Model 1947 and its kin have the highest “direct” body count, although I’d bet Eugene Stoner’s varmint rifle is catching up…

  7. One last thing concerning the Arch Duke & his wife’s assassination, why do they NEVER make mention of his wife being six months pregnant at the time of their murders??


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