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.
A Chinese woman prays as she takes part in a mass on the eve of Christmas at the South Cathedral official Catholic church in Beijing, China, Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2014. Estimates for the number of Christians in China range from the conservative official figure of 23 million to as many as 100 million by independent scholars, raising the possibility that Christians may rival in size the 85 million members of the ruling Communist Party. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
A woman walks past a poster warning against foreign spies displayed in an alleyway in Beijing, China, Wednesday, April 20, 2016. China is marking National Security Education Day with the poster warning young female government workers about dating handsome foreigners, who could turn out to have secret agendas. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)