• Centuries of Style: Silver, Eu auction at Christies

    Sale 7800

    Centuries of Style: Silver, European Ceramics, Portrait Miniatures and Gold Boxes

    17 November 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 357

    A WILLIAM IV SILVER-GILT WAGER-CUP

    MARK OF JOSEPH AND JOHN ANGELL, LONDON, 1833

    Price Realised  

    A WILLIAM IV SILVER-GILT WAGER-CUP
    MARK OF JOSEPH AND JOHN ANGELL, LONDON, 1833
    Formed as a female figure, her skirt realistically chased, supporting a pivoting cup, chased with foliage, marked on rim and rim of cup
    6¾ in. (17 cm.) high
    9 oz. (272 gr.)


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    A wager-cup in the form of a maiden, or junffrauenbecher, developed in Germany during the sixteenth century. As Hannelore Muller has remarked, "... they turned the solemn rite of drinking into an amusing game. The elegant lady's skirt can, if the small figure is turned upside down, be used as a drinking vessel in addition to the tumbler that she holds aloft. A favourite joke was to invite a bridal couple to perform the feat of draining both vessels simultaneously without spilling a drop" (The Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection: European Silver, London, 1986, p. 202). Wager-cups enjoyed a small revival in England in the nineteenth century though surviving examples from this period are rare.

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    Pre-Lot Text

    Property from an Estate