George I Silver Coffee Pot

Date: 1719

Maker: Edward Cornock

Country: England


An early English antique silver coffee pot with straight tapering sides and domed lid typical of the period. Britannia standard silver*. Excellent colour. Shaped wooden side handle. To the front there is a hand engraved armorial within a decorative cartouche. The spout has a hinged cover. Contains 950 ml. Weight 767 grams, 24.6 troy ounces. Height 25 cms. London 1719. Maker Edward Cornock. 

Literature: Coffee cultivation and trade began on the Arabian Peninsula and by the 15th century coffee was being grown in the Yemeni district of Arabia and by the 16th century it was known in Persia, Egypt, Syria, and Turkey. By the 17th century, coffee had made its way to Europe and was becoming popular across the continent. Coffee houses were quickly becoming centres of social activity and communication in the major European cities and in England “penny universities” sprang up, so called because for the price of a penny one could purchase a cup of coffee and engage in stimulating conversation.

*Britannia Standard silver. In 1696, so extensive had become the melting and clipping of coinage that the silversmiths were forbidden to use the sterling standard for their wares, but had to use a new higher standard, 95.8 per cent. New hallmarks were ordered, "the figure of a woman commonly called Britannia" and the lion's head erased (torn off at the neck) replacing the lion passant and the leopard's head crowned. This continued until the old standard of 92.5 per cent was restored in 1720. Britannia standard silver still continues to be produced even today.

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