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MAUSER C96 - a semi automatic pistol that was originally produced by German arms manufacturer Mauser from 1896 to 1937. Unlicensed copies of the gun were also manufactured in Spain and China in the first half of the 20th century. The distinctive characteristics of the C96 are the integral box magazine in front of the trigger, the long barrel, the wooden shoulder stock which gives it the stability of a short-barreled rifle and doubles as a holster or carrying case, and a unique grip shaped like the handle of a broom. The grip earned the gun the nickname "broomhandle" because of its round wooden handle, and in China the C96 was nicknamed the "box cannon" because of its rectangular internal magazine and the fact that it could be holstered in its wooden box-like detachable stock. With its long barrel and high-velocity cartridge, the Mauser C96 had superior range and better penetration than most other pistols of its era; the 7.63×25mm Mauser cartridge was the highest velocity commercially manufactured pistol cartridge until the advent of the .357 Magnum cartridge in 1935. Mauser manufactured approximately 1 million C96 pistols, while the number produced in Spain and China was large but unknown due to the non-existence or poor preservation of production records from those countries.
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