A good early English silver flat top lidded tankard having a scroll handle with decorative thumb piece. Good patina. Lovely plain design and hand beaten silver. To the front there is a hand engraved armorial within a simple decorative cartouche.
Contains 1300 ml.
Weight 862 grams, 27.6 troy ounces.
Height 19cm (to top of thumb piece).
Diameter 10.6cm (top). Spread 21cm.
Fully marked on lid and base, makers mark on the handle. London 1684.
Maker John Spackman*.
Signed/Inscribed: *It is unusual to have a makers name for a piece of silver of this early date as there are no precise records of silver makers’ marks prior to 1697. All records were destroyed in the fire at Goldsmiths Hall in 1681 when the Assay Office and apartments of the Assayer and Clerk in the south west wing of the building were burned down. From 1697 onwards Goldsmiths Hall has preserved a complete record of workmen’s marks, addresses, together with their names and the dates. Sometimes the details of makers can be discovered from old records such as the inventories of noble houses and other institutions.
The first surviving record at Goldsmiths Hall is the 1682 copper plate made to start the recording process again. This has recently prompted a study by Dr David Mitchell, supported by Goldsmiths Hall, resulting in the publication of his 2017 “Silversmiths in Elizabethan and Stuart London”. This reference work identifies previously unknown makers marks and assigns marks struck on existing plate to individuals (attributions for 540 separate marks).
JOHN SPACKMAN I
John Spackman I, London silversmith, apprenticed to Roger Stephens 1668, free 1676, Livery 1687.