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Antique Boxed Set 12 Pairs Mother of Pearl Fruit Forks Knives Spoons Etc 19th C

Antique Boxed Set 12 Pairs Mother of Pearl Fruit Forks Knives Spoons Etc 19th C Sold
Ref:08775

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This is a beautiful antique English burr walnut boxed silver plated cutlery set with hallmarks for Sheffield 1880 and the maker's mark of the renowned silversmith Martin, Hall & Co.
 
The set consists of twelve pairs of silver plated fruit forks and knives with the most exquisite shaped mother of pearl handles together with a set of four berry spoons, two pairs of nutcrackers, a pair of grape scissors, a fork & knife server, a castor sugar ladle and a cream ladle.
 
The interior is finished in plush
royal  blue velvet.
 
 
This is a fabulous set which will gracefully adorn any table.
 
 
Condition:
 
This is the complete set and it is in really excellent condition.
 

Dimensions in cm:

Height 9 x Width 39 x Depth 28 - Box

Dimensions in inches:

Height 3 inches x Width 1 foot, 3 inches x Depth 11 inches - Box

Martin, Hall & Co
The origin of the firm is in the partnership established in 1820 in Sheffield by Henry Wilkinson and John Roberts who traded as Wilkinson & Roberts. Wilkinson left the business in 1836 and in 1846 John Roberts entered in partnership with Ebenezer Hall (his apprentice in 1836) under the style Roberts & Hall.
In 1854 entered into the partnership Richard Martin (of Martin Brothers & Naylor) and Joshua Hall (brother of Ebenezer Hall) under the style Martin, Hall & Co. In 1866 the firm was converted into a Ltd.

The factory was active at Shrewsbury Works, Broad Street Park, Sheffield with showrooms in London (where they were listed as manufacturing silversmiths and electroplated manufacturers, silver, plated and steel cutlers), Sydney, Birmingham and Glasgow.

The firm participated to the 1851 Great Exhibition, the Internation Exhibition (1862), the Sydney Exhibition (1879), the Melboune Exhibition (1881) and the 1915 British Industries Fair.

Besides its sterling silver and electroplated items, the firm had a successful cheap line of products on a patented white metal called "Martino".
Items made by Martin, Hall & Co were retailed by Wordley & Co - Liverpool, Ball & Edwards - Birmingham, Henry Ellis & Son - Exeter, Charles Nephew & Co - Calcutta, West & Son - Dublin, Goldsmiths Alliance Ltd - Cornhill, Pearce & Co - Leeds, Mappin Brothers - London, George Edward & Sons - Glasgow, James Aitchinson - Edinburgh, Mackay & Chisholm - Edinburgh and many other firms.
After WWI and a brief association of interests with Gladwin Ltd the firm went in liquidation and was struck off the register in 1936 (according to another source the business was sold to Frank Cobb & Co in 1931/1932).

Mother of pearl is an organic-inorganic composite material produced by some molluscs as an inner shell layer; it is also what makes up the outer coating of pearls. It is strong, resilient, and iridescent. The outer layer of pearls and the inside layer of pearl oyster and freshwater pearl mussel shells are made of nacre. 

Both black and white nacre are and were used for design purposes. They were used as decorative motif used in cabinet making or silversmithing. The natural nacre may be artificially tinted to almost any colour. Nacre tesserae may be cut into shapes and laminated to a ceramic tile or marble base. The tesserae are hand-placed and closely sandwiched together, creating an irregular mosaic or pattern (such as a weave). The laminated material is typically about 2 mm thick. The tesserae are then lacquered and polished creating a durable and glossy surface.
 

Walnut & Burr Walnut

Walnut is a hard, dense, tight- grained wood that polishes to a very smooth finish. It is a popular and attractive wood whose colour ranges from near white in the sapwood to a dark hew in the heartwood. When dried in a kiln, walnut wood tends to develop a dull brown colour, but when air-dried can become a rich purplish-brown. Because of its colour, hardness and grain, it is a prized furniture and carving wood. Walnut veneer was highly priced and the cost would reflect the ‘fanciness’ of the veneer – the more decorative, then the more expensive and desirable.

Burr walnut refers to the swirling figure present in nearly all walnut when cut and polished, and especially in the wood taken from the base of the tree where it joins the roots. However the true burr is a rare growth on the tree where hundreds of tiny branches have started to grow. Burr walnut produces some of the most complex and beautiful figuring you can find.

Walnut "burrs" were often used to make fabulous furniture.  Veneer sliced from walnut burl is one of the most valuable and highly prized by cabinet makers and prestige car manufacturers and is also a favourite material for shotgun stocks.

 Inlay was commonly used in the production of decorative burr walnut furniture, where pieces of coloured veneers are inlaid into the surface of the walnut, adding delicate or intricate patterns and designs. Inlays normally use various exotic  veneers, but other materials such as  mother-of-pearl, brass or bone were  also be used.
  

Angelica Kauffman, RA (1741 - 1807)

was a Swiss-born Austrian Neoclassical painter who had a successful career in London and Rome. Though born as "Kauffmann", Kauffman is the preferred spelling of her name in English; it is the form she herself used most in signing her correspondence, documents and paintings.

While Kauffman produced many types of art, she identified herself primarily as a history painter, an unusual designation for a woman artist in the 18th century. History painting, was considered the most elite and lucrative category in academic painting during this time period. Under the direction of Sir Joshua Reynolds, the Royal Academy made a strong effort to promote history painting to a native audience who were more interested in commissioning and buying portraits and landscapes.

Despite the popularity that Kauffman enjoyed in British society and her success as an artist, she was disappointed by the relative apathy that the British had towards history painting. Ultimately she left Britain for the continent, where history painting was better established, held in higher esteem and patronized.

The works of Angelica Kauffman have retained their reputation. By 1911, rooms decorated with her work were still to be seen in various quarters. At Hampton Court was a portrait of the duchess of Brunswick; in the National Portrait Gallery, a self-portrait. There were other pictures by her at Paris, at Dresden, in the Hermitage at St Petersburg, in the Alte Pinakothek atMunich, in Kadriorg Palace, Tallinn (Estonia).

Satinwood

is a hard and durable wood with a satinlike sheen, much used in cabinetmaking, especially in marquetry. It comes from two tropical trees of the family Rutaceae (rue family). East Indian or Ceylon satinwood is the yellowish or dark-brown heartwood of Chloroxylon swietenia.

The lustrous, fine-grained, usually figured wood is used for furniture, cabinetwork, veneers, and backs of brushes. West Indian satinwood, sometimes called yellow wood, is considered superior. It is the golden yellow, lustrous, even-grained wood found in the Florida Keys and the West Indies.

It has long been valued for furniture. It is also used for musical instruments, veneers, and other purposes. Satinwood is classified in the division Magnoliophyta, class Magnoliopsida, order Sapindales, family Rutaceae.

Our reference: 08775