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Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop     Order Form     Request more information
Reference: S1357
Period: George II
Year: 1739
Silversmith: John Pero
Place: London
Price: $ 6 700.00
Weight: 785 grams
Dimensions: 9.0 cm wide
Condition: Excellent overall. Slight kinks in shell bowl with tiny split in 2 where feet are attached, probably original. Minor scratches associated with use.

Description: A magnificent set of 4 early Georgian cast scallop shell dishes, with "curled" handles, the ends "rolled over" to form a double scroll grip, in the manner of Onslow pattern flatware. The use of scallop shells is the subject of some argument, they have long been called "butter shells", but have also been described as "oyster scallops", salts, sweetmeat and sauce dishes (Judith Bannister, "Scallop Shells in English Silver, Collectors Guide, June 1967"). They are in the style of Paul de Lamerie, who popularised these in the 1730's, so much so that other makers followed suit. The shells are realistically cast, roughly life size and rest on 3 dolphin feet, also cast, in keeping with the marine theme. Each shell is also engraved with a family crest, a Maltese cross over a crescent, surrounded by branches. The shells are exceptional quality, they are solid and heavy, and the detail on both shells and dolphins is good. The hallmarks are visible but given the curved shape of the shell are not well struck, and are worn. The townmark, dateletter and lion passant can be clearly identified. However the makers mark is only partially visible, but given the crown, ornate P, top of J and the shape of the shield, we believe it to be John Pero (Grimwade 1599), an opinion that is supported by Sotheby's. John Pero was a Huguenot who worked between 1717 and 1741. To quote Grimwade in London Goldsmith - "His work, which is rare, shows a high standard and individual character" - which certainly applies to these scallop shells.
Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
scallop shells

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Front view

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Individual shell

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Side view

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Base

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Detail dolphin

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Crest

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Scale

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Hallmark 1

Georgian Silver Scallop Shell Dishes (set of 4) - Escallop
Hallmark 2

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