Markings on Lee Enfield Rifles

Ever sat there wondering about what markings, a number or a symbol means on your LE?  Well I for one have had many an hour scratching my head trying to decipher what they all the markings mean.

So in order to help, I have put together the following set of images and pictures to help shed some light on the matter.

I have taken the markings directly from rifles to give an as accurate as possible image from which you are able to compare against. If you have markings that you are able to shed light or elaborate on please do. Also if you have images that may be of use please feel fee to contact me as I am sure they would help add to the website.

If anyone spots an error that I make could they please email me with the correction, it would be greatly appreciated.

Also this may take a while so be patient!!



Victoria Regina As with all British made service rifles, the Enfield’s all bore the Crown and initial of the reigning monarch of that time. However there are slight variations between manufacturers and production dates.


Victoria Regina again, but note this time the change in the crown, both these cyphers were on the side of the receivers. The dates were different as was the maker. Queen Victoria reigned from 1837 to 1901. So one can but only surmise that proof marks bearing crowns would also share variations.


George Rex, note again a variation in the style of crown for this monarch.


Export Marks Now this may well be one of the more common set of stamps. A set of information marks, that were stamped onto the rifle when sold out of service. That the rifle fired a ,303 projectile, the case max overall length was 2.222 in inch’s and it was pressure tested to 18.5 to ton. The BNP stood for British Nitro Proof, it was tested and passed Nitro proofing.


Now this symbol is known as the “Broad Arrow“, there are many variations and it may be found with other markings. It denotes acceptance / issue as a military rifle into a specific country( such as NZ either side denoting New Zealand) or on its own. This mark may be found on various part of the rifle including woodwork. This particular stamp was on a No5 other marks may be more sweeping in their appearance.


Sold out of Service, meaning just that, the rifle was at the end of its useful military life was sold into the commercial market. It would have then been proofed if exported  and stamped along with the image with .303 2.222 etc.


Sold out of Service but over EY, now I will happily be corrected here, but that means that at some stage in the rifles life it was for either emergency use only or it was used as a grenade launcher / line thrower. Emergency Use only could be due many reasons, barrel wear etc through to nothing wrong with it like a P14 fatboy, just not enough to be put into normal use and held back for emergency use only.


Broad Arrow War Department, Normally found on the older rifles such as the Long lees, MLE, Metfords, Snider and before.


Possibly an Inspectors mark from BSA, note the stylised “B”, Sparkbrook had a more standard arabic lettering. I need to do more research as I expected the B to be directly under the crown.


Victoria Regina Monarch Cypher 1st Proof


George Rex Proof however this was from a P14 circa 1916 I need to re-examine the last symbol to see if it is a 1 or poorly struck P


I need to go back to this rifle and have a closer look at the markings, if I remember rightly it’s off a No5MkI, the N has me scratching!!!


George Rex Proof done at time of assembly or just after firing final inspection.


Victoria Regina Monarch Cypher 2nd Proof


Inspectors Mark Royal Small Arms Factory Enfield


This has me a little stumped as I would have expected the “E” to be above the 88 as in an Inspectors Mark Royal Small Arms Factory Enfield.


Inspectors Mark  Royal Small Arms Factory Enfield


Lithgow Proof Mark, Lithgow being the Australian factory that made some very nice SMLE’s. The Lithgow factory was situated at Lithgow in NSW, Australia. The factory went on to make Vickers and other weapons.



Inspectors Mark Lithgow Factory Australia


Inspectors Mark Lithgow Factory Australia



To be honest I have no idea and need to go back look at the rifle and notes I made at the time! I think it was from a No5


Draw lapped Barrel, this particular marking is from a No5Mk1


Siamese markings, this is from one of the 10,000 made SMLE’s made by BSA.


Maltby, Royal Ordinance Factory Maltby, this stylised M will be found on No4Mk1’s and possibly on subsequent upgrades? Maltby factory was in the Yorkshire, UK.


Orange Rifle Factory, this was a feeder factory for Lithgow, another marking that you may come across is MAO, (and contrary to belief as I have seen it advertised on an auction site, this is NOT Min of Angle!) it may be found on the Butts of Lithgow rifles and is the mark for the Rifle factory No3 NSW.


Fazakerley,  this F is on the top of a mag plate in a mag, Royal Ordinance Factory Fazakerley can also be marked ROF(F), FY or UF.


EFD stands for Royal Small Arms Factory Enfield Lock, other variations on this are UE, ENFIELD and an E morphed into a D, I will try to up load a picture later to show this.


These marks indicate that there is something wrong with the barrel, the rifle in question is an early Metford. Such rifles would have been relegated to a training situation, Drill for Cadets


E in this instance indicates an Enfield Rifling was used in the barrel on this rifle. The E will be on the knox area of the rifle or on the barrel itself.


Birmingham Small Arms Logo, located on the Knox of the rifle


GRI Indian Manufactured Rifle approx. 1907-1943 and 1944-1951 depending on the crown style above



 ERA “Eddystone Remington Arms” One of the manufacturers of the P14



Factory Through Repair its a rifle that is sent back to one of the Factories and it is stripped down and subjected to a stringent visual, gauged and metallurgical examination against the original factory tolerances. Every part that goes back, including the barrel must conform to an 80% new life. Its a process of overhaul and upgrade of old worn or outdated parts.


Factory Through Repair 1952 Date of repair as detailed above


54 on Barrel this indicates the year the rifle was rebarreled, normally preceded with a



No4Mk1 an early stamp indicating number and mark of rifle


No4Mk1/2 Stamp indicating Number and mark of rifle, in this case a No4Mk1/2 see


No4MkI ok this old girl has had an interesting life, initially a 1943 Longbranch produced No4Mk1*, then in 1951 it went through the FTR process at Royal Ordnance Factory Fazakerley and was re serialed 50L9930 


No5Mk1 ROF (F) Jungle Carbine manufactured at Royal Ordnance Factory Fazakerley




22 This was on the underside of a hollowed out mag, it denotes that this mag was used on one of the .22 trainers


.22 No2 this was on a bolt head. The bolt head has an off centre firing pin hole to accommodate the .22 round. As such are clearly marked as not to get mixed up with .303 bolt heads


H on the top of the knox, this was to remind Australians what the rugby goal posts looked like when playing the All Blacks as they spent so much time under their own and may have forgotten what they look like. ( also indicated a heavy barrel on an Australian No1)