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Silver spoons have been used since ancient times and have a much longer history than the table fork, which did not come into general use until the 18th century. In England the introduction of hallmarks in the 14th century means a piece of silver can be dated and its locations identified.

The main variation to spoons often comes in the form of the stem, or more specifically the terminal. Henry VIII apostle spoons are highly rare and hugely sought after, while examples by makers such as Omar Ramsden, Sybil Dunlop or George Jensen carry a premium. Scottish and Irish silver spoons remain important sectors of this market.

Read ATG's detailed guide to silver spoons here


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ATG letter: Scots spoon served up in NZ

31 August 2020

MADAM – Just to add to the provenance of the newly discovered Scottish disc-end spoon in your most recent edition (Pick of the week, ATG No 2456, sold at Lyon & Turnbull for £21,000).

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Norwich lion spoon takes pride of place at Salisbury auction

31 August 2020

Once the second city in the kingdom, Norwich had its own silver assay office during three periods between 1565 and 1702.

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Pick of the week: Disc-end spoon discovery scoops £21,000

24 August 2020

While most early Scottish spoon types follow closely known and comparable patterns from England or mainland Europe, the ‘disc-end’ is an exception. Made for perhaps a century from c.1580, it is a form seemingly unique to Scotland.

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Youghal basting spoon draws interest in Salisbury

13 January 2020

Alongside pieces made in Kinsale, Galway and Waterford, silver from the small County Cork town of Youghal is among the scarcest of all Irish provincial silver. Only a handful of pieces survive that carry the punning town mark of a yawl.

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SILVER: Sale of the ‘Mambury Set’ of 10 James I apostle spoons tops the regional spring sales of antique silver

29 April 2019

Satirical magazine Private Eye once ran a series highlighting the fatuity of interviews by supposedly asking famous names their feelings towards spoons, there being nothing more mundane or less worthy of comment. But the appeal of an antique spoon to the cognoscenti is not difficult to appreciate.

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Kinsale marrow scoop is a cut above in Crewkerne

29 April 2019

On account of its relative scarcity, all Irish silver carries a premium. It is the pieces made in small provincial centres that are most highly prized.

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Forres silver reaches high point at Thomson Roddick sale

26 November 2018

Rare as Forres silver is, three pieces by the Highland town’s smiths John and Patrick Riach were on offer at Edinburgh auction house Thomson Roddick (17.5% buyer’s premium) on October 11 – the fiddle pattern dessert spoon, below, and two characteristic Scottish toddy labels.

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Charles Rennie Mackintosh teaspoon from Glasgow commission sells in Derbyshire

16 July 2018

Four days after fire gutted the Glasgow School of Art designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh, this silver-plated teaspoon, below, designed by the great man was offered by Derbyshire auction house Hansons (20% buyer’s premium).

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Spoons are a key Ashbee work

12 February 2018

Marked CRA and dated 1895, a set of three silver spoons offered at auction represent a key point in the career of one of the giants of the Arts & Crafts movement, Charles Robert Ashbee (1863-1942).

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Sell-out sale of early spoons in Salisbury

27 November 2017

A recent silver sale at Woolley & Wallis in Salisbury included a cache of early spoons from the collection of David Constable. Each had been illustrated and discussed in his magnum opus, 'Silver Spoons of Britain', published in 2016.

Silver Spoons of Britain book published after 10 years of research

24 February 2016

Silver collector, expert and author David Constable has had a love affair with spoons since he began collecting in earnest in 1997.

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Provincial silver packs a £17,000 punch

22 July 2015

This rare Irish provincial silver punch strainer took £14,000 at Lawrences’ latest sale in Crewkerne. Dated to c.1740-60, it is struck twice for Joseph Johns, one of only a handful of silversmiths working in Limerick in the middle of the 18th century.

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Bloody Mary spoon creates a stir at £10,800

26 September 2014

The quarterly auction of silver and plated wares held by Fellows in the Birmingham Jewellery Quarter on September 22 included a family collection of eight apostle spoons formed several generations ago.

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A £25,000 record for Irish flatware?

27 June 2014

Seventeenth century Dublin trefid spoons are extremely scarce. Last year a single rat-tailed example by Andrew Gregory, 1685, sold for €9000 at Adams of Dublin.

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Edinburgh spoon scoops up £22,000

28 August 2012

This rare Charles I spoon topped the latest sale of Scottish silver held by Edinburgh auctioneers Lyon & Turnbull, selling for £22,000.

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Andro Gilmour makes his mark

17 December 2011

ONLY two Scottish 17th century lace-back spoons are recorded by the National Museum of Scotland so this example offered by Dreweatts at Donnington Priory was quite a rarity.

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Scottish Puritan scoops £27,000

23 August 2010

PURITAN spoons are not uncommon survivors in English silver but, for reasons still largely unknown, Scottish examples are very rare. To date, only nine hallmarked or provincial examples are known.

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Master Butcher shows how to fillet Scottish silver

07 February 2009

WOOLLEY and Wallis silver specialist Alex Butcher is well known for his expertise in the spoon world, but his most recent offering at the Salisbury saleroom took the specialisation a step further.

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Britton Smith spoons come to the fore

27 December 2008

BONHAMS’ latest silver auction was another sale of two parts. Around a third of it was devoted entirely to one specialist collecting field, early spoons, the bulk from one vendor, Mr Britton Smith.

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Spoonfuls of success in silver market

04 September 2004

When John Norie (d.2003) began his collection back in the 1950s, caddy spoons were not every collector’s cup of tea.