8937
Antique William III Silver Dinner Plates

Date: 1700

Maker: Ralph Leake (Or Leeke)

Country: England

Stock Number: 8937

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A rare set of 12 antique silver plates of plain design with a broad rim. Britannia standard silver*. Each has a hand engraved coat of arms for Stanley impaling Sloane. Lovely patina and excellent original condition. This is the earliest form of plate you can hope to find in a dozen set. Weight 5,311 grams, 170 troy ounces. Diameter 24.2 cms (outside rim), 16 cms (inside rim) London 1700. Maker Ralph Leeke (or Leake).

Literature: *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 pure. 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.

Signed/Inscribed: The arms are those of Stanley impaling Sloane, for George Stanley Esq. (d.1733), of Paultons, co. Southampton and his wife Sarah (d.1764) daughter of Sir Hans Sloane 1st Bt., (1660-1753), physician to King George I and Fellow and President of the Royal Society. George Stanley and Sarah Sloane were married in 1719 and their son Hans Stanley (1720-1780) was born a year later. He later became a Tory member of Parliament for Southampton in 1754, Privy Councillor and ambassador-extraordinary to St. Petersburg. George Stanley died at his own hand in 1733.

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