Unblinking Eye
The Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Pistol

The Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Pistol

by Ed Buffaloe

Gaspar Arizaga Pistols

Gaspar Arizaga Warwinck Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Warwinck Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Mondial ? 14 Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Mondial № 14 Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Vesta Pistol - SN 202506

Gaspar Arizaga Vesta Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Warwick Pistol

Gaspar Arizaga Warwick Pistol

There is not a great deal of information about the Mondial pistol’s maker, Gaspar Arizaga. There are a few Spanish-language sources but the best information I have found is from Robert Adair’s as yet unpublished book, Spanish Semi-Automatic Pistols, 1900 to 1944, from which he has kindly allowed me to quote. Adair points out a close relationship between Arizaga and the Thieme & Edeler company which was well known as a distributor and exporter of Spanish pistols from 1909 into the 1930s.

According to Ramiro Larrañaga, in his book Sintesis Historica de la Armeria Vasca, the earliest reference to Gaspar Arizaga he could find in historical records is from 1890. Arizaga was a member of the Asociacion Armera (Gunsmith Association) in Eibar as early as 1912, and was still listed in the 1929 census of manufacturers under the heading “makers of long arms”. According to Adair, Gaspar Arizaga died in 1971.

Judging from the Arizaga firearms still on the market today, he appears to have been primarily a maker of shotguns. Arizaga may have produced a pistol named Warwinck as early as 1912, and began making Ruby pistols for Gabilondo y Urresti during the First World War. His Ruby pistols were marked with the letter A in an oval.

Gil Gil Borrallo, in his book Evolución del arma corta en España, documents a nine-shot Ruby-style pistol in 7.65mm which he calls “Gaspar Arizaga’s Marina model”. Jesus Mandriñan in his online article on the Warwinck pistol (the 7.65mm version of the Mondial) states that the Warwinck was made around 1912 and may have seen service with the French during the Great War. I have been unable to verify this from another source.

Other pistols linked with Gaspar Arizaga by various writers (including Borrallo, Mandriñan, Gangarosa, Larrañaga, and Adair) include the Pinkerton, Mondial № 14, Vesta, Warwick, and Warwinck brands. All of these pistols are scarce or rare. Based on serial numbers, it seems likely that the 6.35mm Warwick preceded the Mondial but was made in much smaller numbers.

Dr. Leonardo Antaris, in his book Astra Firearms and Selected Competitors, states that “Gaspar Arizaga registered the trade names Mondial and Mundial in 1920...” Robert Adair adds that in 1919 the name Pinkerton was trademarked by Thieme & Edeler, and Thieme & Edeler also trademarked the name Mondial in 1920, the same year as Arizaga’s registration. Adair remarks: ”Since the conflicting trademarks apparently didn’t bother either party, we can assume that they were made with the other party’s consent.”

The Mondial Pistol

Almost all sources provide the same limited information about the Mondial pistol: externally it is a copy of the 1907 Savage but internally it is clearly based on the 1910 Browning design. It is striker-fired, has its recoil spring around the barrel, and disassembles by removing a bushing at the front of the barrel: twisting the barrel turns the barrel lugs out of slots in the frame, allowing it to be removed, followed by the slide.

The Mondial features a magazine safety that locks the sear unless the magazine is fully inserted. The transfer bar runs on the left side of the gun and has a lobe that serves as a disconnector when the slide is out of battery. The manual safety blocks the sear. Early manual safeties have rough checkering (cross-cut grooves), whereas later pistols have triangular-cut grooves in one direction only.

Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Mondial Pistol - SN 4529 Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Mondial Pistol - SN 4529

Mondial Pistol - SN 4529

The Mondial frame is rust blued. The magazine is nickel plated and has six viewing holes on each side; it holds seven cartridges. The magazine release is tensioned by a powerful flat spring which also tensions the safety and which can make the magazine difficult to remove. The grooved magazine release has a slight radius that makes it fit the curve of the thumb. This radius is not seen on any other Spanish pistol and serves as a reliable identifier for Arizaga pistols. The quality of manufacture of the Mondial pistol is quite good; it is nicely finished, with few visible mill marks inside or out.

Mondial Banner Grip

Early Mondial Banner

Mondial Logo Grip

Mondial Owl Trademark

The earliest Mondial grip plates are of checkered horn with a curved banner containing the word “MONDIAL” . But the majority of Mondial grip plates are of checkered hard rubber with a round logo featuring an owl and the words “MONDIAL” above and TRADE MARK below. Above the trigger, on the left side of the frame, is stamped “CAL. 635” . The serial number is stamped at the rear of the frame on the right side, and on the slide, just above. The slide is marked on the left side in all capital serif characters:


The highest serial number I have recorded is 11387.

Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Mondial Pistol - SN 4529 Gaspar Arizaga Mondial Mondial Pistol - SN 4529

Mondial Pistol Field Stripped - SN 4529


  • Adair, Robert. Spanish Semi-Automatic Pistols, 1900 to 1944. Unpublished draft.
  • Antaris, Leonardo M., Astra Firearms and Selected Competitors. Firac, Davenport, Iowa: 2009.
  • Borrallo, Gil Gil. Evolución del arma corta en España. 2006.
  • Gangarosa, Gene. Spanish Handguns. Stoeger Publishing Co., Accokeek, Maryland: 2001.
  • Hogg, Ian & Weeks, John. Pistols of the World. Arms & Armour Press, London: 1978.
  • Larrañaga, Ramiro. Sintesis Historica de la Armeria Vasca. Caja de Ahorros Provincial de Guipuzcoa: 1981.
  • Mandriñan, Jesus. Pistola Warwink.

Copyright 2023 by Ed Buffaloe.  All rights reserved.

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