An extremely rare child's puritan spoon, dating back to the Commonwealth period, when Oliver Cromwell was Lord Protector of England. The spoon has a flat stem with straight sides, and a curved spade shaped bowl. The spoon also has a small V shaped drop. The puritan spoon replaced the slip-top spoon (with hexagonal stem and fig shaped bowl) during the early Commonwealth period, and gained it's name from Cromwell's Puritan soldiers opposed to King Charles I, who considered the more elaborate Apostle spoons "irreverant" (Gask, Old Silver Spoons of England, pg 92). Given that so much silver was melted down during and after the English civil war, Puritan spoons are rare, and the smaller children's puritan spoons are extremely rare. A very similar spoon to this, described as "Rare Charles I child's puritan spoon, 1646, exhibited in Cardiff Museum" was sold as lot 35 of the famous "Alexander James Collection of Early English Silver Spoons", Phillips 1979, with an estimate of GBP 500-600.
Steven Venables worked in L...
A very rare and well preserved slip top spoon, of good gauge, by one of the "First Fifteen" London spoonmakers as identified by Tim Kent (London Silver Spoonmakers, 1500-1697). The slip top is engraved "BB, Feb 13, 1632", in a very attractive fashion, so probably was a Christening present. The spoon has a curved fig shaped bowl, and tapered hexagonal stem, ending in the slipped end. The bowl is hallmarked with crowned leopards head, the base of the stem with makers mark "D enclosing C" for Daniel Cary, alongside a well struck lion passant, and date letter O for 1631, struck at the end of the stem, as is usual during this period. The stem is attached to the bowl with a very stubby and rough rat tail, also usual for the period. This is a lovely spoon, and has a very good feel about it, I am tempted to use it (but have resisted!). A very similar spoon to this by Daniel Cary was sold in the Alexander James Collection of Early English Spoons, by Phillips in 1979. Lot 36 (pg 55), shows a slip top spoon made by Dani...
Early sealtop spoon with squat fluted baluster terminal, engraved with original owners initials VV (or W). These initials are repeated on the bowl above the hallmark. The stem is hexagonal and tapered, and the V joint attaching the finial is clearly visible. The bowl has deep concave sides, and curves steeply from the base of the stem. The stem has 3 hallmarks at the base, a clearly visible "orb and cross" makers mark, and worn marks indicating lion passant and date mark S. The bowl has the usual towmmark, but this is worn, with only the outline visible.
This spoon comes complete with an original receipt from H Perovetz Ltd of London, who sold it to Mr McCay of South Africa in 1979 for 700 pounds. The receipt and original Perovetz tag confirms the maker and date, and refers to Jackson pg 105 and How pg 228, plate 8.
(Note: In our previous description we had mentioned some doubt about the London attribution, suggesting the makers mark could possibly be the Cobbold's of Norwich, given the shape of the shield ...
A rare west country seal top silver spoon, with a Salisbury Group A finial. The seal top is prick engraved "E.B over T.B, 1661", indicating the celebration of a marriage. The bowl is fig shaped, and the stem is tapered and faceted. A small rat-tail connects the bowl to the stem. The seal top join is clearly visible at the back of the spoon, a horizontal join, as opposed to V joint seen on London spoons. The seal top is a decorative baluster casting, of substantial size, decorated with scrolls and gadrooning. This has been described by Tim Kent as a "Salisbury Group A" (Salisbury Silver and its Makers, 1550-1700, Silver Society Journal 3), where similar examples are illustrated on page 16. Kent has recognised that many West Country seal tops of the period were made by one silversmith who specialised in seal top castings, and who distributed them to the silversmiths of the area. Kent also identifies John Smith II as one of the silversmiths who used these (he cites an example of a Salisbury type B found on a sea...
A Spanish silver porringer, inset with a Spanish eight reale coin (one of the famous "pieces of eight") dated 1618, the reign of Philip III (1578-1621). The porringer is hand beaten, with the individual hammer marks clearly visible, creating an attractive pattern. The rim is folded over, and the cast flat handle has a scrolling design. The handle is quite crudely cast, we believe a sign of age. We have dated the porringer 17th century to co-incide with the date of the coin, but it could be later, with an old coin inset. The coin is well preserved on both sides. The reverse reads "Hispania RVM REX 1618" (King of the Spanish), with 2 castles and lion rampants in quatrefoil design (Arms of Castile & Leon). The obverse has the crowned Hapsburg shield, with the Segovia aqueduct mint mark and assayer initial A to the left, and VIII (8 reales) demarcation to the right. It reads "Philippus III DG".
The porringer has 4 hallmarks, but given their proximity to the rim are only partially struck, so they are not clearly ...
Beautiful 17th century memorial (memento mori) matching spoon and fork set in outstanding condition, we feel they deserve to be in a museum. Both have cast triangular handles with an unusual finial, which appears to be a naked woman with a serpents head. The fork has 3 prongs, and the spoon has a crude short rattail. Both are engraved " SARA LEWES Obyt 7 Juny 1672". This set is illustrated and described on page 90-91 of the book "Cape Silver" by Stephan Welz, 1976. Welz describes them as possibly Cape, but we feel they are more likely to be Dutch. A very similar spoon is depicted on page 142 of "Dutch Silver" by M.H. Guns, the spoon has an almost identical bowl and shaft. No hallmarks are present. Note: - The curator of the Silver Dept, Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam, has now described this set as Auricular form, typical of Netherlands in the second half of the 17 th century. His opinion is that it is probably colonial, as known Dutch examples have hallmarks. This set has now been featured in an excellent article in ...
A set of 24 original copper or bronze Roman coins, most of which are AE antoninianus, with the Emperor wearing a radiate crown, commonly called the "barbarous radiate" (Sear, Roman Coins, pg 11). The condition and detail of the coins varies, most show enough detail to determine the Roman Emperor and the deities on the reverse, with the accompaning script. The coins were classified by a collector, using "Roman Coins and their Values, David Sear", as follows:
1. 3080- Tetricus I, AD 270-273
2. 3095- Claudius II Gothicus, 268-270
3. 3119- Claudius II Gothicus
4. 3516- Maximianus, 286-310
5. 3540- Maximianus
6. 3760- Constantine I 307-337
7. 3773- Constantine I (2 coins)
9. 3780- Constantine I (2 coins)
11. 3781- Constantine I
12. 3783- Constantine I
13. 3821- Crispus 317-326
14. 3851- Constantine II 337-340
15. 3900- Constantius II 337-361
16. 3910- Constantius II (2 coins)
18. 3918- Magnentius 350-353
19. 4002- Valentinian I 364-375
20. 4017- Valens 364-378
21. 4018- Valens
22. 4133- Arcadius...
An early antique silver trefid spoon, preserved in excellent condition, and with good hallmarks. The spoon is the traditional trefid shape (also called Pied de Biche, as the style originated in France), and has a lovely reeded rat-tail, which is quite rare. The spoon is engraved with contemporary initials "K * M", engraved correctly on the back of the spoon. The spoon is good quality, and has a lovely feel. The hallmarks include makers mark DO in diamond shaped punch with Fleur de Lys above and below. This mark belongs to Dorothy Grant (Grimwade 3591, Jackson pg 136, under 1680). Dorothy Grant was the widow of William Grant, she worked until 1712, both her sons Benjamin and William apprenticed under her (Grimwade pg 527). Other marks include crowned leopards head (worn), lion passant and date letter O for 1691, which is very clear. Note: We had originally ascribed this mark to John Downes (Jackson, pg 155, Wyler, pg 145, Grimwade pg 46), but this mark is clearly in a diamond rather than circular punch used by...
An early James II silver trefid spoon, by one of the "First Fifteen" London spoonmakers (1580-1697), as identified by Tim Kent in his book "London Silver Spoonmakers". The trefid spoon has a ribbed rat-tail, and is prick engraved "M.P over C.G", indicating this spoon celebrated a marriage. The engraving is delightful, and is contemporary. The spoon is in lovely condition, well preserved given it's age. The makers mark is superb, very clearly struck and perfectly preserved, it could not be better - easily as good as the example illustrated by Kent (pg 36), taken from the original copper plate preserved by the Goldsmiths Hall. This is Thomas Allens' pre 1697 mark. It has 3 pellets above, and a rose below, all clearly visible. The other hallmarks are visible but worn, the crowned leopards head for London, and date letter h for 1685. The lion passant is just visible, but very worn. Thomas Allen was apprenticed to John King (another of the First Fifteen) in 1668, and freed in 1675 (Grimwade pg 422). He was a speci...
An ancient Greek silver Drachm, set in a 14 carat gold bezel with pendant loop. The Drachm depicts Alexander the Great of the Kingdom of Macedonia, the most successful general of all history. The front shows an idealised portrait of Alexander in the guise of the mythical hero Heracles, clad in a Nemean lion skin headdress. It is in high relief, the detail is lovely. The back depicts the God Zeus, seated with bare chest, he holds a trident and has a bird in the other hand. It also contains a number of symbols and letters that indicate the mint mark for Amphipolis (right angle above torch, and M and star below chair). Amphipolis was an important naval base during the reign of Alexander, it ceased to exist around 400 AD. The pendant ring is stamped 585, indicating the gold is 14 carat.
A lovely Queen Anne Dognose (also called wavy end) spoon in Brittania silver. The Dognose was popular during the Queen Anne period, and the transition between the earlier Trefid and later Hanoverian can clearly be seen. This spoon is engraved "KH" on the back of the spoon, which is correct as spoons were placed bowl down on the table at this time. The spoon has a very pronounced rat-tail, and is quite good quality, this spoon has a nice feel. The hallmarks are quite clear but squashed, as is usual for this period, as the stem was shaped after the hallmarks were struck. The hallmarks include Britannia, lions head erased, and date letter O for 1709. The makers mark is partially worn, but enough is present to positively identify Henry Greene (Grimwade 878, Jackson pg 160), with the R, distinctive shaped shield and pellet below. Greene was apprenticed to Thomas Allen (one of the First Fifteen spoonmakers), and freed in 1700. He was one of the London goldsmiths who signed the petition against "necessitous strange...