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Bodeo Model 1889
Italy revolver, Modello 1889, Pistola a Rotazione, System Bodeo, Caliber 10.35 mm, made in 1918 - National World War I Museum - Kansas City, MO - DSC07468.JPG
A Bodeo Model 1889, with folding trigger.
Type Service Revolver
Place of origin  Kingdom of Italy
Service history
Used by Royal Italian Army
Wars World War I,
Second Italo-Abyssinian War,
Spanish Civil War,
World War II
Production history
Produced 1889 to c. 1931
Weight 950 g (2.09 lb)
Length 232 mm (9.1 in)
Barrel length 115 mm (4.5 in)

Cartridge 10.35mm Ordinanza Italiana
Action Double Action
Muzzle velocity 836 ft/s [1]
Feed system 6 round cylinder
Sights Fixed iron sights

The Bodeo Model 1889 revolver (Italian language: Pistola Rotazione, Sistema Bodeo, Modello 1889 ) was named after the head Italian firearm commission Carlo Bodeo. It was produced by a wide variety of manufacturers between 1889 and 1931 in both Spain and Italy. It was employed by the Royal Italian Army in World War I, the Interwar Italian colonial wars, and World War II. The Bodeo comes in two distinct varieties with only superficial weapons differences.


Made by a large variety of Italian gunmakers, the Bodeo became the service revolver of the Italian Army in 1891.[2] The revolver was named after the head of the Italian commission that recommended its adoption Carl Bodeo.[3] It remained the principle handgun of the Italian Army until it was increasingly supplanted by the Glisenti Model 1910.[2] The revolver was never declared obsolete and remained as a reserve weapon until the end of World War II.[4] Among the Italian manufacturers identified with the production of the Bodeo include, Societa Siderurgica Glisenti,Castelli of Brescia, Metallurgica Bresciana, and Vincenzo Bernardelli of Gardone Val Trompia.[5] During World War I, Spanish manufacturers, Errasti and Arrostegui of Eibar produced the Bodeo for the Italian government.[5] The Italians nicknamed this revolver coscia d’agnello ("leg of lamb"). During World War II the Wehrmacht designated the Bodeo Revolver 680(i) when utilized as an alternative firearm.[6]

Design Details[]


Royal Arsenal of Brescia mark

The Bodeo Model 1889 is a solid framed, six shot shot revolver.[5] The revolver was designed in two distinct versions. A round-barreled version designed with a trigger guard and octagonal-barreled version with a folding trigger.[3] The octagonal-barreled revolver was produced for rank and file Italian soldiers while the round-barreled was produced for non-commissioned officers and field officers.[5] The folding trigger version was produced in greater number.[4]


The Bodeo was considered simple and robust.[3] Because the revolver was made by a wide variety of manufacturers, the quality of the weapon varied greatly with frames being made from a wide variety of materials ranging from brass to brazed copper plates.[7] The gate was connected to the hammer[4] and the barrel was screwed into the frame.[3] Ejection was achieved by the rod normally housed in the hollow axis pin.[3] The hammer block was designed to prevent firing unless the trigger was pulled fully back.[4]


  1. Miller, David. Fighting Men of World War II, Volume I: Axis Forces--Uniforms, Equipment, and Weapons (Fighting Men of World War II). Stackpole Books. p. 348. ISBN 0-8117-0277-4. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Hogg, Ian, Pistols of the World 4th Edition (2004) p. 49
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 McNab, Chris, The Great Book of Guns (2004) p. 105
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Hogg, Ian, Military Small Arms of the 20th Century 7th Edition (2000) p. 59
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 Hogg, Ian, Pistols of the World 4th Edition (2004) p. 50
  6. Luciano Salvatici. Pistole Militari Italiane
  7. Kinard, Jeff. Pistols: an illustrated history of their impact, p. 157, ABC-CLIO, Inc. 2003.

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