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    Sale 2091

    Important American Silver

    17 January 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 146

    THE INTEMPERANCE TANKARD: A HISTORICAL SILVER TANKARD DESIGNED BY MORITZ RETZSCH

    MARK OF TIFFANY & CO., 550 BROADWAY, NEW YORK, 1856-1870

    Price Realised  

    THE INTEMPERANCE TANKARD: A HISTORICAL SILVER TANKARD DESIGNED BY MORITZ RETZSCH
    MARK OF TIFFANY & CO., 550 BROADWAY, NEW YORK, 1856-1870
    Tapering cylindrical, the body modeled and chased all over with graphic scenes of men and women engaging in acts of debauchery and drunkenness, the bifurcated handle formed as a grapevine, the hinged cover with thumbpiece modeled as two intertwined men with a wine jug, the base engraved with an inscription Katharine L. Standish
    9¼ in. high; 47 oz. 10 dwt.


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    This tankard was designed by Friedrich August Moritz Retzsch (1779-1857), a German painter and engraver who was best known for his engraved illustrations of the works of German poets and Shakespeare. The Temperance movement, dedicated to promoting abstinence from intoxicating beverages, gained great popularity in the United States during the nineteenth century. The cause was advocated by churches across the country; by 1833 there were 6,000 local societies. In 1851, the state of Maine went completely dry. Other states soon followed with some form of prohibition. Graphic woodcuts and engravings of debauched drunks helped spread the moral message of the movement.

    Another tankard of this design sold in these Rooms, January 18-19, 2001, lot 307.