Superb late Victorian pierced silver-plated liquor caddy/tantalus with three cut crystal decanters, circa 1880 in date.
The silver plated decanter stand has a central spade handle and a three-lobed base with reticulated and chased scrolling floral design set on scrolled foliate feet and three heavy cut glass long-necked decanters with stoppers
The craftsmanship is second to none and this beautiful set is sure to add a touch of class to your dining experience.
In excellent condition, please see photos for confirmation of condition.
Dimensions in cm:
Height 48 x Width 22 x Depth 22
Dimensions in inches:
Height 18.9 x Width 8.7 x Depth 8.7
Tantalus is a type of liquor decanter in which the bottle stoppers are locked down tightly by a metal bar. This was to prevent the theft of the contents by servants. Like the name suggests, the decanters themselves are visible, drawing temptation while unattainable. A key is required for entry.
The most common types of tantalus holds three bottles or decanters while there are also smaller types housing only two. There are many different forms of tantalus. Often the encasement has metal handles on both sides and ornately carved decor. Crystal and metal versions are also a beautiful option when choosing a tantalus.
Tantalus derived its name from the story of the mythological Greek king, Tantalus. To be tantalized is to be tempted with the unattainable, and the king, condemned to an eternity in Hades, was sorely tested. He was forced to stand forever in water that, when he bent to drink, would recede and to gaze upon foods he could only reach for and never grasp.
The 1800s saw our Victorian predecessors apply the King’s name to the lockable decanter.
Our reference: 08840