An excellent early English silver tazza of plain circular form on a shaped foot. Britannia standard silver*. Lovely simple styling typical of the period. Good size and patina. Weight 723 grams, 23.2 troy ounces. Height 6.25 cms. Diameter 29 cms. London 1718. Maker Richard Bayley
Biography – Richard Bayley was apprenticed to Charles Overing in 1699 and turned over to John Gibbons in 1704. Free 1706. First mark entered in 1708 at Foster Lane, London, 2nd mark 1720, third mark 1732. Warden of the Goldsmiths Company 1746-8. Prime warden 1751*. He was known for his good plain hollow-ware such as tankards, jugs, tea and coffee pots. His son, Richard, was apprenticed to Samuel Spindler in 1713.
Signed – *Britannia Standard. In 1696, so extensive had become the melting and clipping of coinage that the silversmiths were forbidden to use the sterling standard for their wares, but had to use a new higher standard, 95.8 per cent. New hallmarks were ordered, “the figure of a woman commonly called Britannia” and the lion’s head erased (torn off at the neck) replacing the lion passant and the leopard’s head crowned. This continued until the old standard of 92.5 per cent was restored in 1720. Britannia standard silver still continues to be produced even today.