The Glisenti Model 1910 was an Italian self-loading pistol that was produced by Societa Siderurgica Glisenti. It served as the standard handgun of the Italian Army during World War I, and continued to see issue during World War II.
The Glisenti M1910 was commissioned by the Italian Army in 1906, after the Carabinieri received a small order of Häussler & Roch pistols. Societa Siderurgica Glisenti, formerly Real Fabbrica d'Armi Glisenti, were contracted to improve the Häussler & Roch, and this work was undertaken by a design team headed by Abiel Revelli.
The initial production run was chambered in a proprietary 7.65mm Glisenti cartridge, although not much ammunition of this type was ever produced. Glisenti then developed a proprietary reduced-load 9×19mm cartridge known as 9mm Glisenti, which supplanted the earlier 7.65mm round. The reduced load was to facilitate for the fragile construction of the gun. Both the pistol, and 9mm cartridge, were officially taken into service with the Italian Army in 1910, and thus the Glisenti pistol became known as the Model 1910.
Faults with the M1910 were soon noted. Its fragility became such an issue that in 1912, Metallurgica Brescia gia Tempini were contracted to produce an improved model known as the Brixia Model 1912, however it was not successful and was rejected from military service. The Glisenti was in widespread service by the time of World War I, but proved so unpopular with officers that the Italian Army began looking for a replacement. The Beretta M1915 was selected to partially replace the Glisenti in 1916, but the Glisenti nonetheless remained in production up until the early 1930s. By 1934, it was officially replaced by the Beretta M1934 as the standard Italian service pistol.
The Glisenti pistol was still in limited issue during World War II, but was almost completely phased out after 1941.
The Glisenti M1910 Auto featured a locked breech design, whereby the barrel and bolt move with the recoil produced from a shot. The barrel, when it reaches the furthest point rearward, then stops (releasing the now unlocked) bolt which slides forward down the chamber, bringing the barrel forwards aswell. This assembly is then locked in place by a wedge located in the frame.
However this design was not particularly strong, meaning that anything more powerful than Glisenti's own 9mm cartridge would cause the gun the fail. Furthermore the screw located on the front of the frame (designed to allow the left side of the gun to be exposed and disassembled) would untighten as the M1910 was used, causing an inherent lack of stiffness in the design.