THESE two superb pieces of Victorian silver proved flagship lots for two south of England salerooms in July.
Offered by Charles Ross (15/10% buyer's premium) in Woburn on July 15 was the imposing Victorian table centrepiece, top right, with its (probably original) oval form, hobnail cut glass bowl supported by a reeded gallery and held aloft by a pair of finely cast semi-nude mythical winged figures. Measuring 20in (50cm) across, it was hallmarked for Elkington (who more typically made such pieces in electroplate) and assayed in Birmingham, 1886.
After a long telephone battle it was eventually knocked down to a London dealer underbid by a telephone from Paris at £9900.
From the same consignor, a long established client of the auctioneer, came a pair of Victorian cut glass claret jugs with silver mounts and girdles, still contained in their original case, and assayed for London, 1892. Providing an interesting price comparison with a similar pair of silver-gilt claret jugs sold by Dreweatt Neate of Donnington Priory on July 7 for £5800 (reported in Antiques Trade Gazette 1652, dated August 21) this duo sold to another London dealer for £5600.
The Fernhurst, West Sussex auctioneers John Nicholson (15% buyer's premium) offered the pair of silver gilt salts by Robert Garrard, one shown bottom right, on July 21-22. Made in London in 1863 they were of the quality one expects from this eminent silversmith and highly decorative too, each featuring a winged cherub holding a trident while riding a shell chariot pulled by dolphins. Complete with spoons that took the total weight to 56oz, they found the middle of their £8000-12,000 estimate, selling at £10,000 to the trade.
In a bear market for more standard silver tablewares two results at this two-day sale were satisfying.
A matched set of four George III candlesticks, each a standard Coker or Café model with gadrooned square shaped bases and twisted knops to the stem, 11in (27cm) high marked for London 1767 and 1768, sold at £4700. Well up on modest £400-600 hopes, a 15in (38cm) diameter, 120oz monteith by Charles Stuart Harris, London 1901, with lion handles sold at £3400.