Christening Cup

Christening Cup

Hunt and Roskill, Designers and Silversmiths

1852

Silver, parcel-gilt

Height: 15cm / 5 7/8 inches. Width: 9 cm/ 3 1/2 inches.


"Columbine shape, the cup lobed and decorated with hatch engraving is supported by three kneeling angels, their hands clasped, their raised and crossed wings forming a calyx. Below the circular base on which they kneel is a larger one, around which lies a serpent, symbolising longevity. Marks: London hallmarks for 1852. Maker's mark of John Samuel Hunt for Hunt & Roskell. Inscribed on base: HUNT & ROSKELL LATE STORR MORTIMER & HUNT. "

The designer of this cup is unknown, but Hunt & Roskell of 13 New Bond Street employed several well-known artists in their studio. One was E. H. Baily, the sculptor, who had formerly modelled for the Royal Goldsmiths of the Regency, Rundell, Bridge & Rundell. He was persuaded to leave them by Paul Storr, who had given up the direction of one of Rundell's workshops and gone into partnership with John Mortimer in 1823. Storr's firm was eventually styled Hunt and Roskell, one of the richest and best known silversmithing concerns of the Victorian era. They employed several Frenchmen (including the great artist-craftsman Antoine Vechte), and the presence of these designers in their studio probably explains the structural use of wing forms, which was copied from contemporary French sources."

-- Shirley Bury, Victorian and Edwardian Decorative Art, p. 18.

References

Victorian and Edwardian Decorative Art: The Handley-Read Collection. Ed. Simon Jarvis. London: Royal Academy, 1972. No. A30.


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Last modified October 1999