It started with a simple question: What would a modern-day semi-automatic shotgun look like if it were re-imagined as a classic Italian custom? Benelli answered with the Magnifico Set of Five finely finished semi-automatic shotguns that blend Old World craftsmanship with cutting-edge manufacturing.
The set consists of two 12-ga. models paired with two 20-ga. offerings, with a fifth 28-ga. model rounding out the set. During the building process, Benelli commissioned some of the leading artists in Italy to contribute their unique talents to the guns. Master engravers Giovanni Steduto and Valerio Peli ensured that the receivers were emblazoned with intricate scrollwork and classic hunting scenes. Master gunmakers at Armi F.lli Piotti selected the finest walnut stock blanks available, ensured a perfect wood-to-metal fit, treated them with a hand-rubbed oil finish and topped off the stocks with buttplates made from buffalo horn.
Benelli hired leather artist Oscar Maschera to create a hand-stitched, tri-fold carrying case made from vegetable-tanned, full-grain leather that holds all five guns, and it’s completed with brass hardware and gauge-specific cleaning kits for each shotgun. An engraving of Leonardo da Vinci’s “Lady with an Ermine” is inset into the case lid, and included alongside the guns is an unpublished novella by 2005 Nobel Prize nominee Umberto Piersanti, “Among Forests and Fields.” The one-of-a-kind set will be sold at auction, and Benelli plans to donate $200,000 to Safari Club International following the sale in order to further the organization’s advocacy work.
For more information, please visit benelliusa.com.