George III silver gilt presentation cup and cover, estimated at £4000-6000 at Cheffins.

Enjoy unlimited access: just £1 for 12 weeks

Subscribe now

Marked for William Burwash, London 1818, the campana form vessels with its bacchanalian masks and elaborate scroll handles has a presentation inscription to Thomas Scholes Withrington in gratitude for the indefatigable zeal and intrepidity with which he discharged the duties of that arduous and responsible situation in a season of extraordinary difficulty and danger.

Scholes Withrington (c.1790-1838) was an elected Constable of Manchester in 1816 and Borough Reeve (equivalent to the mayor) in August 1819 when a huge crowd of 60,000 gathered in St Peter’s Field to demand parliamentary reform.

He read the Riot Act before an intoxicated Yeomanry made a general attack on the main crowd. In short, this cup appears to have been presented for his involvement in the Peterloo Massacre.

Estimate £4000-6000.