Christening Cup and Cover

Christening Cup and Cover

R. & S. Garrard Designers and Silversmiths


Silver, parcel-gilt

Height: 37cm / 14 1/2 in. Width: l9 cm/ 71inches.

"The lower half of the body with four wide lobes, each separated with swags of fruit and flowers. The surface matted, and decorated with strapwork cartouches, foliated scrolls and bosses, all gilt. The neck lobed, gilt and panelled, with the inscriptions: TO ALBERTHA FRANCES HAMILTON/FROM HER GODFATHER ALBERT FEBy 23rd 1848. Gilt cherubs with shields bearing the cyphers of godfather and godchild, are perched on brackets to form handles. The rim of matted silver, chased with gilt thistles, shamrock and the Tudor rose; attached to it lion masks and bosses, from which depend swags of fruit and flowers. Short gadrooned stem, four-lobed foot with gilt strapwork, shaped base, aiso parcel-gilt, with lobe and leaf ornament. The separate cover decorated as the lower half of the body, and surmounted by a lobed cross flanked by two cherubs, one bearing the cross and the other the sceptre and the orb, with the emblems of the United Kingdom. Marks: London hallmark for 1847. Maker's mark of Robert Garrard, R. & S. Garrard, Panton St., London. Inscribed with the name and address of the makers on the base.

The Prince Consort, who gave this cup to Albertha, daughter of the first Duke of Abercorn, was himself a designer of plate. His silver-gilt table centre, made for him in 1842 by Garrard's, the Crown Jewellers, is on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum, lent from the Royal Collections. Its form and decorative detail is crisper and sharper than is shown by this piece, which is more Teutonic than Italianate in style. It is probably the work of W. F. Spencer, one of the junior designers in Garrard's design studio." -- Shirley Bury, Victorian and Edwardian Decorative Art, p. 18.


Victorian and Edwardian Decorative Art: The Handley-Read Collection. Ed. Simon Jarvis. London: Royal Academy, 1972. No. A29.

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Last modified 14 November 2004