Antique Charles II Silver Porringer and Lid

Date: 1675

Maker: Simon Romney

Country: England

Stock Number: 8739

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A rare piece of early English silver. A large plain style antique sterling silver porringer with side handles. The matching lid has a capstan shaped finial so that the lid can be turned upside down and used on its own as a saucer. This is the form of the early Restoration porringer, with a bellied shape and the lid sitting over the upper rim. There is a small silver support either side next to the handle for the lid to sit on. To the front there is a large hand engraved armorial and griffin crest within a cartouche of plumage feathers. The lid finial is similarly decorated. Weight 375 grams, 12 troy ounces. Height 14 cms (total), 10 cms (cup), 4.5 cms (lid). Diameter 10 cms. Spread across the handles 17 cms. London 1675. Makers mark "SR" in a shield (there are 2 similar marks in Jacksons, see page 124 and 129, bottom of the page), probably Simon Romney (attribution by Dr David Mitchell "Silversmiths in Elizabethan and Stuart London").

Signed/Inscribed: *It is unusual to have a maker's name for a piece of silver of this early date as there are no precise records of silver makers' marks prior to 1697. All records were destroyed in the fire at Goldsmiths Hall in 1681 when the Assay Office and apartments of the Assayer and Clerk in the south west wing of the building were burned down. From 1697 onwards Goldsmiths Hall has preserved a complete record of workmen's marks, addresses, together with their names and the dates. Sometimes the details of makers can be discovered from old records such as the inventories of noble houses and other institutions. The first surviving record at Goldsmiths Hall is the 1682 copper plate made to start the recording process again. This has recently prompted a study by Dr David Mitchell, supported by Goldsmiths Hall, resulting in the publication of his 2017 "Silversmiths in Elizabethan and Stuart London". This reference work identifies previously unknown makers marks and assigns marks struck on existing plate to individuals (attributions for 540 separate marks).

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