A splendid antique silver drinks flask in the form of a standing bear with outstretched paws. Excellent quality and heavy gauge cast silver. Very pleasing design with lifelike detail in the face and all-over chased fur. The head is removable so that the body can be used as a decanter and the head as a cup; it pours beautifully. The interior is gilded.
Contains 1 litre.
Weight 1407 grams, 45.2 troy ounces.
Height 24.5cm. Width between the paws 13.5cm.
German Hanau silver marks.
Marks. Stamped on the collar of the bear’s head with the German silver marks “crown and moon”, 800 silver purity (800/1000), and maker’s mark, probably Neresheimer, Hanau.
B NERESHEIMER & SOHNES
B. Neresheimer & Sohne, Hanau, Germany are probably the best well known of the Hanoi silversmith firms operating around the turn of the 19th century. The antique silver industry of Hanau specialised in excellent copies of old master silversmiths’ work, particularly Nuremberg pieces, double lady cups, old goblets, snuff boxes and so on. These copies were marked with fantasy marks, somewhat resembling old marks, which also harmonized with the style of the piece. For example, French rococo style reproductions are marked with French looking marks, German seventeenth century-inspired pieces got German-looking marks, and so on. These marks were usually in a style reminiscent of seventeenth and eighteenth century maker’s marks.