A very rare and prestigious item. This magnificent gilt silver armada jug and stand was presented in honour of the Guildhall banquet for the Prince and Princess of Wales’s return from India. The tall jug, of vase shape form, has bands of classical motifs and ribbing, the centre with deep relief swags of ribbons and fruit with centre medallions. This superb decoration is repeated on the matching base which has a raised central dome decorated with the Prince of Wales feathers. The front of the basin has a large presentation inscription dated 1876.
Weight – ewer 908 grams, basin 1258 grams, total 2166 grams, 69.6 troy ounces.
Jug – height36cm, spread 14cm.
Basin diameter 39.5cm.
Maker Martin Hall.
A finer ewer and basin would be hard to find.
Defra Ivory Registration S44DZVAJ
Marks. Both jug and ewer are stamped with a full set of English silver hallmarks, same maker. The ewer and basin body are date marked for 1875, the ewer lid is the date marked for 1876.
Inscription. “Presented to John Crawford Esq. A Testimony of appreciation of his valuable services to the Committee for the Reception of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. At the Guildhall. May 19th 1876”.
The Prince of Wales was Prince Albert, (1841-1910) eldest son of Queen Victoria, later crowned King Edward VII in 1901. The Princess of Wales is Alexandra, later Queen Alexandra.
Maker: Martin Hall and Co
The firm Martin Hall was established as a partnership in 1820 in Sheffield by Henry Wilkinson and John Roberts, trading as Wilkinson & Roberts. Wilkinson left in 1836. In 1846 John Roberts became partners with Ebenezer Hall (his apprentice in 1836) as Roberts & Hall. In 1854 Richard Martin (of Martin Brothers & Naylor) and Joshua Hall (brother of Ebenezer Hall) entered the partnership and the firm became Martin, Hall & Co. In 1866 the firm became a limited company. Although originally based at Shrewsbury Works, Sheffield the company also had factories in London and Birmingham with showrooms in London and Glasgow. The firm participated in the 1851 Great Exhibition, the International Exhibition (1862), the Sydney Exhibition (1879), the Melbourne Exhibition (1881) and the 1915 British Industries Fair. In liquidation 1933, Closed by 1936. Their full name was Richard Martin, Ebenezer Hall & Co.
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