Military Wiki
Repeating Rifle Muster 1888
Mannlicher M1888 rifle, from the collections of the Swedish Army Museum.
Type Bolt-action rifle
Place of origin Austria-Hungary
Service history
In service 1888–1945
Used by See Users
Wars Philippine Revolution,
1891 Chilean Civil War,
Boxer Rebellion,
First Balkan War,
Second Balkan War,
Russian Civil War,[1]
Revolutions and interventions in Hungary,
Polish–Soviet War,[2]
Greco-Turkish War,[3]
Spanish Civil War,
Sudeten German uprising 1938,
World War I,
World War II (Volkssturm)
Production history
Designer Ferdinand von Mannlicher
Designed 1887–1888
Manufacturer Steyr-Mannlicher, Fegyver És Gépgyár
Produced 1888–1896
Number built 1,095,000
Variants M1888-90, M1888-95, M1888/24[4]
Specifications (M88)
Weight 4.41 kg (9.7 lb)
Length 1,280 mm (50 in)
Barrel length 765 mm (30.1 in)

Cartridge M88 8×52mmR
M88-90 and M88-95: 8×50mmR
M88/24: 8×57mm IS
Action Straight-pull bolt action
Muzzle velocity 530 metres per second (1,700 ft/s) with M1888 ball cartridge
Feed system 5-round en-bloc clip (stripper clip in M88/24), integral box magazine
Sights Iron sights

The Repeating Rifle Muster 1888 better known as Mannlicher M1888 was a bolt-action rifle used by several armies from 1888 to 1945. Derived from the M1885 and later M1886 models, it was Ferdinand Mannlicher's third rifle that utilized the "enbloc clip".

It was succedeed by the Mannlicher M1895 as the standard service rifle of the Austro-Hungarian Army. The M95 uses a more secure rotating-bolt, in contrast to the M88's wedge-lock bolt.


Mannlicher M1888 mechanism.

The M1888 was a direct and immediate descendant of the M1886 Austrian Mannlicher. This rifle too was a straight-pull, bolt-action, box magazine repeater. As early as the beginning of production of the M1886 the need and desirability for a small-bore rifle was evident. This rifle is virtually identical to its predecessor but for chambering a newly designed 8 mm cartridge, loaded originally with black powder and denominated 8×52mmR.

A Slovene soldier of the Austro-Hungarian Common Army posing with his M1888 service rifle and fixed bayonet.

M1888-90 rifle

Shortly thereafter, the M88 cartridge was converted to semi-smokeless powder. The new cartridge was designated 8mm M.1890 scharfe Patrone and its dimensions were 8×50mmR. The sights of existing black powder 8mm Mannlicher rifles were converted to accommodate semi-smokeless ammunition by the functional arrangement of screw mounting re-graduated sideplates onto the outsides of the existing rear sight walls. The converted rifles were denominated M.88–90.

M1890 rifle

When in 1890 semi-smokeless powder became available, manufacture of rifles with a longer and thus stronger chamber and modified sights began. Although the smokeless powder filled M.93 8×50mmR cartridge can be used in this rifle, the generated pressure at 40,000 psi (275.8 MPa) is marginal, as the wedge-lock bolt system this rifle uses was originally designed to be shot with less potent black powder filled 11×58mmR ammunution.


  •  Austria-Hungary
  • Flag of Austria.svg First Austrian Republic
  •  Ecuador[5]
  •  Kingdom of Bulgaria
  •  China[6]
  •  Czechoslovakia
  • Flag of the Sudets (without CoA).Svg Sudeten German Party
  •  Nazi Germany: Used by Volkssturm.
  •  Kingdom of Greece: Captured from Bulgaria during the Second Balkan War and at the end of WWI.[3]
  •  Kingdom of Hungary
  •  Kingdom of Italy
  •  Qajar dynasty
  •  Philippines
  •  Second Polish Republic
  •  Thailand: According to Steyr sales records, 15,000 M1888 rifles were furnished to Siam, most in the 1890s. Some may have been used items, sold from Austrian military stocks.[7]
  •  Chile[8]


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