The original 'Milton Shield' was made for the the 1867 Paris Exposition Universelle and is now in the collection of the Victoria & Albert Museum, London. More commonly seen in pure electrotype, the present example incorporates damascened iron decoration - like the original.
With typical Victorian bravado the original is described in the 1867 Exhibition catalogue as 'the best work exhibited in Paris' and 'one of the grandest works of its class that has been produced in any age or country.' A similar example is illustrated in V. Brett, Sotheby's Directory of Silver, p. 301, No. 1410.
John Milton's epic poem Paradise Lost was first published in 1667 and relates the Judeo-Christian story of the Fall of Man: the temptation of Adam and Eve by Satan and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden.