• Important Silver and Objects o auction at Christies

    Sale 2209

    Important Silver and Objects of Vertu Including the Inventory of Marks Antiques of London

    22 October 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 80

    A FRENCH PARCEL-GILT SILVER TRAY IN THE ISLAMIC TASTE

    MARK OF MOREL & CIE, PARIS, CIRCA 1845-60

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A FRENCH PARCEL-GILT SILVER TRAY IN THE ISLAMIC TASTE
    MARK OF MOREL & CIE, PARIS, CIRCA 1845-60
    Shaped rectangular, the border and field chased and engraved, with arabesques, centering monogram CC with surround Arabic calligraphy, with two elephant head handles, applied coat-of-arms; marked on reverse, and border, stamped Morel and Cie, with defaced maker's mark
    28½ in. (72.4 cm.) long; 104 oz. (3,236 gr.)


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    This tour de force of orientalist design reflects the burgeoning interest in exoticism during the 1840s and 1850s that was adopted by the most accomplished French silversmiths, such as Morel, his former business partner, Duponchel, Christofle and Boucheron (see lot 77 for a ewer of orientalist design). This tray was probably made before 1848, as it employs a mark used prior to Morel's departure to London (marked with M over V, compass between). Due to litigation, Morel was not permitted to register a mark, or trade in Paris after 1848 and this would explain the defaced mark. When Morel returned to France and settled in Sèvres in 1852, he employed another mark (V over M, sword between).