Leige (High Grade) 4 barrel set
- field barrel 28" full/full
- field barrel 26" mod/imp
- skeet barrel w/ broadway rib
- trap barrel w/broadway rib
The Leige was the beginning of the end....
John M Browning died in 1926, one of his last projects was the Superpose shotgun. "Superpose" is derived from the French term meaning "one over the other".
John Browning was concerned with the negative publicity and protests against repeating shotguns called by conservationists "game exterminators". Fearful the A-5's would be legislated obsolete, JMB told his son Val, the time was right for an affordable sporting shotgun.
The "Over-Under" design appealed to him because of its single sighting plane and that it should not begin close to the eye, but slope up to an apex. The pitch would be pronounced so that the angle where the slope and level plane join would be abrupt enough to be well defined, but not enough to stop the eye.
Unfortunately JMB died before the project could be finished, with the final design work done by his son Val Browning. First introduced to the US market in 1931 it immediately was a hit with hunters and target shooters.
In the 1970's the Superpose began suffering increased costs and low sales, prices rose 29% in 1974 alone. Concerned the Superpose would price itself out of the market, Browning introduced the the low cost alternative called the "Leige". These were made in Belgium at the Herstal plant. Only available for two years, the Leige could be had in high grade and basic blued receiver. This was the beginning of the end for the economical over-unders from Belgium.
The Leige was the predecessor to the Citori. To reduce costs and stay competitive, Browning discontinued the Leige after two years and replaced it with the Japanese built Citori.
This is one I picked up in the mid 80's, complete with Bolino engraving and chromed receiver. These came out prior to the introduction of "interchangeable choke tubes", to get a different choke you needed to change the barrels. About a year ago I found new barrels available for the Leige on Gun Broker for $99 each. Mid West Gun Works near St Louis bought out the remaining stock from FN. I wasted no time buying all the different variations offered and had them custom fitted to the receiver by MGW. Probably the only known Leige 4 barrel set in existence. Recently bought a nice aluminum case to store the gun and barrels in.