A rare and interesting Victorian silver vesta case, with an enamelled Malta Blue twopence halfpenny stamp, used between 1885 and 1890. The vesta itself is rectangular in shape, with striker in base, and silver ring attachment (for attachment to Albert chain). The vesta is hallmarked in the usual place, along the inside top rim, with Lion Passant, anchor, date letter P (only in use from May to July 1890, after the duty mark was retired), and partial makers mark C. in shield punch, possibly Charles Usher of Usher Manufacturing Company. This vesta previously sold at Sotheby's London in 1988, their description stated "very rare, the only example we have seen", they also described the "superb enamelled representation of the Malta 1885-90 2&half d blue".
A rare and unusual Victorian silver double lidded twin stamp box, one of the most practical designs we have seen on a stamp box. The box is rectangular, and is good quality, a pleasing weight, with gilded interior with 2 sloped compartments, and twin lids on separate hinges. The lids have separate silver frames which hold the glass in place covering the representative stamp. The box is clearly hallmarked, both lids and both frames are hallmarked as well. Cohen & Charles worked between 1890 and 1974, founded by Albert Cohen and Charles Solomon. They were the sole English agents for the leading French firm of Baudet Freres & Cie, so were a prestigious firm (Culme, Gold & Silversmiths, pg 88).
An interesting pair of Cape Silver Old English pattern teaspoons, by the rare maker J De Jongh. The spoons have a Continental feel, with a rounded drop and strong overhang at the end of the spoons. They are stamped with full makers mark "J.DE.JONGH" (Welz mark 43, pg 148, Cape Silver), and are also stamped with initials IFP, the initials here being individually struck, as can be seen from their irregular pattern. Welz provides no details for De Jongh, saying only it appears on silverware as though it was a makers mark. David Heller (History of Cape Silver, pg 77) refers to De Jongh as a "seldom found" maker, indirectly connected to the Lotter family (relation of Hendrik de Jongh, married to Johanna Combrink in 1795, sister to silversmith Johannes Combrink). The initials IFP are retailers marks for Johan Frederik Pollnitz, of the firm Wagner & Von Pollnitz, who retailed silver amongst other goods from Longmarket Street between 1837 and 1847 (Morrison, The silversmiths and goldsmiths of the Cape of Good Hope, ...
Two Victorian silver vinaigrettes, both very similar in shape and design, reflecting the style of the time. Both are oval in shape with a wavy rim, concave sides, both have engine turned engraving, and both have vacant cartouche (for initials or family crest). Both also have an ornate floral grille, and both are gilded. Both also have clear hallmarks on both base and lid, the grille on the Smith example is also hallmarked. The first, by Edward Smith 1845, has an attractive snake shaped thumb piece, the base design is distinctly different from the cover design. The second still has its original sponge. Edward Smith was a specialist boxmaker, he worked between 1827 and 1865. James Cronin and Sarah & George Wheeler worked between 1846 and 1852 from St Pauls Square, Birmingham.
A magnificent and rare pair of silver-gilt Victorian Bacchanalian pattern grape scissors, in excellent condition. The scissors are completely silver gilt (apart from screw), and are completely sterling silver (no steel inserts). They are the traditional shape, and are decorated with the rare Bacchanalian pattern, designed by Stothard for the Royal Goldsmiths Rundell, Bridge & Rundell, originally made by Paul Storr, pieces are still in the Royal collection today. This is one of the rarest English silver flatware patterns, it shows Bacchus, the Roman God of wine, riding a lion, whilst a topless Diana looks on, with another figure asleep at her feet. The back is also beautifully decorated, with tilted amphora of wine, bunches of grapes and vine leaves complete the decoration. Bacchanalian pattern is shown in the book "Silver Flatware" by Pickford (pg. 127), where an identical pair of grape scissors is shown, made by Wakely and Wheeler. The hallmarks are very clear, and include makers mark HJL for Henry John Lia...
A rare Victorian silver triple stamp box, one of the nicer ones we have see. The box is rectangular with concave sides, and is on four ball feet, the hinged lid has a sliding insert with glass top, to enable stamps to be placed in the lid. The interior is gilded, and has 3 compartments for 3 different denomination stamps, with 2 original wooden curved inserts, to easily slide a stamp out. It is quite a substantial, well made box, it would have been an expensive item when new. The box is clearly hallmarked, the lid and sliding insert are hallmarked as well. George Unite was established in 1825, Unite apprenticed with Joseph Willmore, he died in 1896, the business was continued by his sons.
A lovely set of 6 Rat-tail Hanoverian coffee spoons with gilded bowls, and matching sugar tongs. These spoons have wavy rat-tails, a very unusual feature we have not seen before. The arms of the tongs are modeled as matching spoons, complete with the wavy rat-tail. Hallmarks on all 7 items are clear. Harry Synyer and Charles Beddoes worked between 1897 and 1949, from Vyse Street, Birmingham.
An interesting British Arts & Crafts medallion, which could be worn as a pendant. The pendant has the Manchester Coat of Arms, complete with sailing ship and globe signifying Manchester's world trade, with bees on the globe signifying the industrial revolution. The supporters include an antelope and lion, and the motto "Concilio et Labore", translated "By Wisdom and Effort". The medallion also has Arts and Crafts symbols, including hammer & anvil, paintboard and brush, and hammer & wheel. The back is engraved "Awarded to Mabel Maynard for Miniature Painting, Manchester April 1901". The hallmarks are clear, and the loop is also hallmarked.
An interesting Sampson Mordan antique silver bowl, with a Victorian silver half crown dated 1900 set into the bowl. The bowl is engraved "God Save The Queen, The Last Coinage of the Nineteenth Century". The bowl is good quality, the coin is very fine, protected by the rim on the base. The hallmarks are excellent, including Sampson Mordan makers mark. The bowl is also stamped "copyright" in small letters below the coin. Sampson Mordan are well known for their collectable novelty silver.
An interesting set of 4 Cape silver Fiddle pattern tableforks, by Lodewyk Beck. They have no initials, although 1 fork has the remnants of an initial just visible. It appears 1 fork was made at a different time, as the hallmarks are struck differently from the other 3. The hallmarks include makers mark LB with 4 pseudo English hallmarks, including lion, duty mark, castle town mark and date letter a. What is interesting about the hallmarks is that they are all individually struck, with not too much care, both the sterling lion and the date letter have been struck upside down on one, it appears the order and orientation of hallmarks was not important to Cape silversmiths. The 4th fork, has the same hallmarks but struck further apart. Lodewyk Willem Christiaan Beck worked between 1847 and 1867, from Shortmarket street and Greenmarket Square.
An extremely rare Victorian silver Palm pattern butter knife, with initial W. Pickford describes the rarity of Palm pattern in his book "Silver Flatware", pg 148, this is the only Palm pattern butter knife we have seen. The hallmarks are clear, but the makers mark is worn. Palm pattern appears in the Chawner & Co (George Adams) pattern books, who were the most important 19th century silver flatware makers. Please note we also have Palm pattern soup spoons (S1612), made by George Adams in 1876.
An antique Danish silver christening spoon, this is a 19th century replica of a 16th century spoon, originally used for Royal coronations. This is a beautiful spoon, extremely good quality, it has a lovely feel. The circular bowl is engraved in traditional style, the gilded front with Madonna holding 2 babies, one with a crown, and surrounded by traditional religious inscription in ancient Scandinavian (translation assistance would be most welcome!). The back of the bowl is engraved with St Olaf of Norway, holding battleaxe and orb, standing on a lion with crowned head, also surrounded by inscription. The cast handle of the spoon is very decorative, a head above a warrior with sword, above traditional implements (thor hammer, hand). The back of the handle has an attractive celtic design. The hallmarks include makers mark A.M (possible Anton Michelson?), the Copenhagen town mark (3 towers), date letter for 1868, and assay masters mark SG for Simon Groth, who worked between 1863 and 1904. Wayne Bednersh, author...
A very rare set of 4 Palm pattern soup spoons, made by George Adams of Chawner & Co, who were the most important mid 19th century firm of spoon makers (Pickford, Jacksons Hallmarks, pg 56). The spoons are exceptional quality and weight, just under 100 grammes each, they are a joy to hold. The spoons are engraved with the original owners initials, "JK & CK". The Palm pattern is described as "very rare, produced by Chawner & Co, in whose pattern book it appears" by Pickford in his book "Silver Flatware, pg 148". The book also has a photo of a Palm pattern fork and spoon from the V&A museum. The spoons are beautifully made, with good detail on the palm leaves. The hallmarks on all 4 spoons are extremely clear, marked on the bowl to prevent damage to the pattern. Two interesting journeymans marks are also present, 3 dots and K, probably the craftsmen involved in making the spoons. A Palm pattern tablespoon sold as lot 73, Finial postal auction January 2012. Please note we also have a Palm pattern butter knife, S1...
A Chinese jade pendant with 14 carat gold clasp and ring. The jade is light green, with some natural dark green patches. The pendant is kidney shaped, and both sides have a carved tree. The gold ring is hallmarked "14 K, 585" indicating 14 carat gold, which is 58.5% pure. 14 Carat gold is often used for jewellery. According to Chinese tradition, sons are thought fortunate, and in celebration male progeny is often presented with a piece of jade.
A lovely Emerald and God Neckpiece, with 21 Brazilian emeralds set in a decorative 12 carat gold necklace. The emeralds have an average size of 0.365 ct, the clarity is good, cut good and colour very slightly blueish green.
The neck piece was appraised in 2010 by a registered Gemologist Appraiser (ISG) and member of the Jewellery Council of South Africa, the replacement value then was R 27 187 (South African Rands, approximately US $ 3200). The original certificate accompanies this purchase. Note - This necklace was revalued in May 2017 by Gemlab (www.gemlab.co.za), certifying 7.81 carats of oval mixed good colour heavily included emeralds, with 10.44 grams of 14 carat gold, replacement value R 93100, this certificate is included.
A rare Victorian silver postal scale, in full working order. The scale is intended for measuring postal items, so that the correct postage could be applied. This scale would have been used in a wealthy household, not a Post Office. The front is engraved "Postal Scale" on top, on the side "Postal Union Rates 2 1/2 d for each 1/2 ounce." To the left is engraved "English Rates" above measuring scale from 1d - 4d in 1/2 increments. To the right are 2 measures, 1 marked "LB" for pounds (scale 0 to 1 LB), to the right "OZ" for ounces measuring from 1-16. The engraving is exquisite, this is a lovely item. The base is rectangular with a Chippendale rim. The scale also has a knob (for adjusting scale) behind the pan, and a silver screw for opening the scale. The side of the scale is fully hallmarked, a registration number RD 308820, is also present. The top pan is also hallmarked, these are worn from polishing. Levi & Salaman were established in 1870, they were known for their high quality silver novelties...
An unusual set of Scottish Silver Hanoverian tablespoons, made in Victorian times. These spoons are lovely spoons, very good quality and weight, a pleasure to use. The spoons have a double drop, are bottom marked and have script initials "AW" engraved on the back of the spoons, in 18th century style. The spoons were probably made to order, as they are replicas of an earlier style. The hallmarks on all 4 spoons are excellent, including makers mark "G&MC" for George and Michael Crichton, who worked between 1864 and 1876.
A magnificent pair of Victorian silver gilt spoons, with a beautiful figure of a maiden (or Goddess), sculpted with lovely detail. She is full figure, with a long flowing dress with a high slit, with flowers adorning the front. She holds her arms crossed, and has her hair in a bun. The design has a strong Art Nouveau look and feel, these spoons were well ahead of their time when made in 1873. The spoons are very good quality and gauge, very suitable for use as serving spoons for a dessert. The hallmarks are very clear on both spoons. Henry William Curry took over the business of Augustus Piesse in 1868, which he continued until 1889. Of interest is that Curry was in trouble with the Goldsmiths Hall in 1880 in a matter of counterfeiting hallmarks (John Culme, Directory of Gold and Silversmiths, pg 366).
A Cape silver Fiddle pattern dessert fork, with contemporary engraved initial M. The fork has excellent hallmarks, makers mark WM and the Cape Stub mark (see our articles section) consisting of 4 English pseudo hallmarks, Lion passant, date letter capital A, Georgian kings head duty mark and leopards head (town mark for London). The fork is very good quality and weight, and is suitable for use. The tines are very long, longer than usual, this fork has probably not been used. What is interesting about this Cape stub mark is that the punch is showing signs of wear, particularly the Leopards head. This lead to a mistake in Morrison (The Silversmiths and Goldsmiths of the Cape of Good Hope, 1936, pg 59), and later Heller (History of Cape Silver), where the hallmark is mistakenly drawn as an anchor (MM63 in Heller, pg 154).
A Victorian silver wine bottle stand, with blank central cartouche (suitable for engraving), with embossed shell and scroll decoration, raised edge and 4 very ornate scrolling feet. It is a good weight and is good quality, and suitable for use. The base is engraved "Hunt & Roskell, Late Storr & Mortimer, 8095". The sterling lion, town mark, date letter and duty mark are clear, but the makers mark is very faint and barely visible (although not necessary with the full name engraved on the base). Hunt & Roskell were the most prestigious silversmiths of Victorian England, having descended from Paul Storr, the most famous of English silversmiths. They were silversmiths and jewellers to Her Majesty Queen Victoria, and had an important display at the Great Exhibition of 1851. In 1865 it was recorded that they were the largest holders of precious stones in Europe (John Culme, Directory of Gold & Silversmiths, pg 245).