• Sale 1140

    The Exceptional Sale

    4 July 2013, London, King Street

  • Lot 15

    THE MAHARAJA OF PATIALA'S BANQUETING-SERVICE
    AN EXTENSIVE GEORGE V SILVER-GILT DINNER-SERVICE

    MARK OF THE GOLDSMITHS' AND SILVERSMITHS' COMPANY, LONDON, 1921

    Price Realised  

    THE MAHARAJA OF PATIALA'S BANQUETING-SERVICE
    AN EXTENSIVE GEORGE V SILVER-GILT DINNER-SERVICE
    MARK OF THE GOLDSMITHS' AND SILVERSMITHS' COMPANY, LONDON, 1921
    Each piece with a scroll and foliage border above cast and chased panels of animals, separated by cast daggers, variously engraved or cast with coat-of-arms, crown and initials
    Comprising:

    a.)
    A Centrepiece
    Formed as three bowls supported on shaped conforming stand, the flower and foliage decorated feet applied with cast elephant's mask, the handles of the bowls with cast lion's masks, marked under bowls and under stand
    the stand 45 in. (114.5 cm.) wide
    710 oz. (22,103 gr.)

    b.)
    A Set of Four Five-Light Candelabra
    Each on four lion's paw feet, the stands applied with cast elephant masks, each marked on foot, on central socket and on nozzles
    26 in. (66 cm.) high
    gross weight 883 oz. (27,470 gr.)

    c.)
    A Pair of Soup-Tureens, Covers and Ladles
    With lion's mask-capped handles, the detachable covers with quatrefoil ogee loop handles, marked under base, on handle and on cover bezel 17¾ in. (45 cm.) wide over handles
    306 oz. (9,522 gr.)

    d.)
    Two Centrepiece-Bowls
    Each oval and with lion's mask-capped handles and on four lion's paw feet, each marked underneath
    21½ in. (55 cm.) wide and slightly smaller
    313 oz. (9,742 gr.)

    e.)
    A Set of Four Centrepiece-Bowls
    Each circular, with spreading foot and on four lion's paw feet, each marked underneath
    10½ in. (26.5 cm.) diam.
    149 oz. (4,633 gr.)

    f.)
    A Set of Four Bowls
    Each oval with lion's mask handles, the conforming base on four lion's paw feet, each marked underneath
    14½ in. (37 cm.) wide
    145 oz. (4,504 gr.)

    g.)
    A Pair of Bowls
    Each oval with lion's mask handles and conforming base, each marked underneath
    14¾ in. (37.5 cm.) wide
    67 oz. (2,075 gr.)

    h.)
    A Set of Three Meat-Dish Covers
    Each oval with a quatrefoil ogee loop handle, each marked on top and under handle
    14 in. (35.5 cm.) wide
    158 oz. (4,900 gr.)

    i.)
    A Set of Four Baskets
    Each shell-shaped with openwork sides and on three lion's paw feet, with rising lion's mask-capped scroll handles, the back applied with cast elephant mask, each marked near border
    10¼ in. (26 cm.) wide
    131 oz. (4086 gr.)

    j.)
    A Set of Twenty Sauceboats and Twenty Sauce-Ladles
    Each oval double-lipped on conforming foot, the scroll handles incorporating cast lion's masks, each marked underneath
    8 in. (20.5 cm.) wide
    460 oz. (14,293 gr.)

    k.)
    A Set of Eleven Entrée-Dishes and Covers
    Each circular with two lion's mask-capped scroll handles, the detachable covers with quatrefoil ogee-loop handles, five with detachable tripartite part-pierced dividers, with a further cover and handle each marked underneath, inside cover and on handle
    12 in. (30.6 cm.) wide over handles
    677 oz. (21,069 gr.)

    l.)
    A Set of Six Entrée-Dishes and Covers
    Each oval, three with conforming quatrefoil ogee loop handles, three handles lacking, each marked underneath
    12½ in. (31.5 cm.) wide
    353 oz. (10,981 gr.)

    m.)
    A Set of Thirty-Seven Soup-Plates
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked underneath
    9½ in. (24 cm.) diam.
    725 oz. (22,542 gr.)

    n.)
    A Set of One Hundred Forty-Eight Dessert-Plates
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked underneath
    8¼ in. (21 cm.) diam.
    1,840 oz. (57,239 gr.)

    o.)
    One Hundred Eighty-Three Dinner-Plates,
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked underneath
    9¾ in. (24.5 cm.) diam.
    3,575 oz. (110,194 gr.)

    p.)
    A Set of Six Meat-Dishes
    Each shaped oval, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    19½ in. (50 cm.) wide
    359 oz. (11,149 gr.)

    q.)
    A Set of Twelve Meat-Dishes
    Each shaped oval, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    18 in. (45.6 cm.) wide
    743 oz. (23,123 gr.)

    r.)
    A Set of Six Meat-Dishes
    Each shaped oblong, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    15½ in. (39.2 cm.) wide
    266 oz. (8,271 gr.)

    s.)
    A Set of Three Fish-Dishes and Three Mazarines
    Each shaped oval, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each fitted with a conforming detachable mazarine, each marked on the back
    26 in. (66 cm.) wide
    429 oz. (13,328 gr.)

    t.)
    A Set of Six Deep Second-Course Dishes
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    14¼ in. (36 cm.) diam.
    314 oz. (9,760 gr.)

    u.)
    A Set of Three Salvers
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    18¾ in. (47.7 cm.) diam.
    312 oz. (7,718 gr.)

    v.)
    A Set of Six Salvers
    Each shaped circular, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    14¾ in. (37 cm.) wide
    345 oz. (10,729 gr.)

    w.)
    Three Coffee-Pots
    Each tapering cylindrical and on circular spreading foot with scrolling ivory-insulated leaf-capped handle, the hinged cover with bud finial, each marked below handle, inside cover and on handle
    9¾ in. (24.8 cm.) high
    gross weight 86 oz. (2,682 gr.)

    x.)
    Three Hot-Water Jugs
    Each tapering cylindrical and on circular spreading foot with ogee-formed spout and ivory-insulated scrolling leaf-capped handle, the hinged cover with bud finial, each marked below handle, inside cover and on handle
    10 in. (25.3 cm.) high
    82 oz. (2,548 gr.)

    y.)
    Three Sugar-Bowls and Three Pairs of Sugar-Tongs
    Each on circular spreading foot with lion mask-capped scrolling handles, each marked underneath
    7½ in. (19 cm.) wide over handles
    39 oz. (1,208 gr.)

    z.)
    A Set of Eighteen Mustard-Pots and Eighteen Mustard-Spoons
    Each on circular spreading foot with lion mask-capped scrolling handles, the hinged cover with bud finial, each marked underneath and inside cover
    4 1/8 in. (10.4 cm.) high
    148 oz. (4,580 gr.)

    aa.)
    A Set of Eighteen Salt-Cellars and Eighteen Salt-Spoons
    Each circular on spreading foot, each with a salt-spoon, each marked underneath
    3 1/8 in. (8 cm.) diam.
    103 oz. (3,308 gr.)

    ab.)
    A Set of Eighteen Pepperettes
    Each vase-shaped on spreading foot, the detachable cover with bud finial, each marked near rim and on cover bezel
    4¾ in. (12 cm.) high
    54 oz. (1,671 gr.)

    ac.)
    Forty-Three Finger-Bowls
    Each circular on conforming base, each marked underneath
    4 5/8 in. (11.6 cm.) diam.
    311 oz. (9,658 gr.)

    ad.)
    A Set of Six Sugar-Casters
    Each vase shaped on spreading foot, the detachable cover pierced and with bud finial, each marked underneath and on cover bezel
    7¼ in. (18.5 cm) high
    58 oz. (1,790 gr.)

    ae.)
    Two Cruet-Stands
    Each boat-shaped with rising lion mask-capped scroll ends and on four lion's paw feet, with quatrefoil ogee loop handle, bottles lacking, each marked underneath
    8½ in. (21 cm.) wide
    44 oz. (1,373 gr.)

    af.)
    A Set of Twelve Almond-Dishes
    Each shaped oval and on four paw feet, the border cast with animals in medallions surrounded by flowers, further cast with initials and a crown, each marked on the back
    7½ in. (19 cm.) wide
    79 oz. (2,456 gr.)

    ag.)
    A Table-Service
    Each piece with a scroll and foliage and border and decorated with a palmette, die-stamped with a cypher below a crown on one side and either a coat-of-arms or an elephant on the other, comprising:

    One-hundred and sixty six table-forks
    One-hundred and eleven dessert-forks
    One-hundred and eleven dessert-spoons
    Twenty-one table-spoons
    Thirty-seven soup-spoons
    Thirty-seven coffee-spoons
    Six pairs of salad-servers
    Two pairs of fish-servers
    Six pairs of asparagus-tongs
    Six ginger-spoons
    Three pairs of grape-scissors
    Six spoons with shell shaped bowls
    and the following with filled handles
    One-hundred and seven table-knives with steel blades
    Seventy-four cheese-knives with steel blades
    Thirty-seven fruit-knives with silver-gilt blades
    Thirty-seven fruit-forks with silver-gilt tines
    Thirty-seven fish-knives with silver-gilt blades
    Thirty-seven fish-forks with silver-gilt tines
    Three melon-knives with silver-gilt blades
    Three melon-forks with silver-gilt blades
    total weighable silver 15,547 oz. (482,572 gr.)


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    Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala

    Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala (1891-1938) was born at Moti Bagh Palace and educated at Aitchison College. On the death of his father, Maharaja Rajinder Singh, on 9 November 1900 he succeeded as Maharaja of Patiala, though a Council of Regency ruled in his name until he took partial powers shortly before his 18th birthday on 1 October 1909, and was invested with full powers by the Viceroy of India, the 4th Earl of Minto, on 3 November 1910.

    Singh was actively involved in Indian politics and in representing India on the world stage, for example serving on the General Staff in France, Belgium, Italy and Palestine in the First World War as an Honorary Lieutenant-Colonel, later being promoted Honorary Major-General in 1918 and Honorary Lieutenant-General in 1931. He also represented India at the League of Nations in 1925, and was chancellor of the Indian Chamber of Princes for 10 years from 1926 until his death in 1938. He married ten times, having had 88 children by his wives and concubines.

    This extensive service gives an insight into the lavish lifestyle of the Maharaja. His wealth and status was such that he was the first man in India to own an aircraft, for which the Patiala Aviation Club was founded. He and his wife patronised some of the leading makers in the world, such as Cartier, whom they commissioned to mount the De Beers diamond as the centrepiece of the magnificent 'Patiala Necklace'. Singh was also an avid and early motorcar enthusiast, indeed legend has it that he would travel in a motorcade of 20 Rolls Royces, however in 1930 he had a falling out with Rolls Royce who he felt slighted him by refusing to accept an order. Such was his power and influence in India that a campaign by him forced the Viceroy to pressure Rolls Royce to change their decision.

    Singh was also an avid and talented cricketer, with him acting as captain of the Indian cricket team that visited England 1911 and again in 1932, although he was forced to drop out of the second tour for health reasons.

    Edward, Prince of Wales' Visit to Patiala

    The Prince travelled to Patiala by train arriving at 8.30 am on the morning of the 22nd February. He was met by the Maharaja and a large reception party, the royal suite was then escorted by the State cavalry to the Moti Bagh Palace through streets lined with people. The Times report at the time commented on the scene, '...the road, with its lavish decorations, its elephants, and its gaily dressed throngs, was most picturesque.' On his arrival at the palace the Prince reviewed the troops and then, accompanied by the Maharaja, ventured out on his horse into the huge crowd which included some 10,000 former soldiers who had served in the First World War. This part of the Prince's tour was partly intended as a restful time for the Prince and after the review there was no official timetable. The Maharaja entertained the Prince with polo matches, pig-sticking, and shooting. The dinners were small and the dances informal. Only on the last evening was a large event held. The State Banquet for 200 people, for which this dinner service was commissioned, was a lavish send off for the Royal guest who departed for Lahore by train at 11.00 that evening following the dinner.

    Special Notice

    Prospective purchasers are advised that several countries prohibit the importation of property containing materials from endangered species, including but not limited to coral, ivory and tortoiseshell. Accordingly, prospective purchasers should familiarize themselves with relevant customs regulations prior to bidding if they intend to import this lot into another country.


    Provenance

    Commissioned by the Maharaja of Patiala in honour of a tour of India by Prince Edward, Prince of Wales, later King Edward VIII and Duke of Windsor, in 1922 and used at the State Banquet held in the Prince's honour on 24 February 1922.
    Maharaja Bhupinder Singh of Patiala (1891-1938).
    Anonymous sale; Sotheby's, Belgravia, 15 December 1977, lot 256.


    Pre-Lot Text

    THE PROPERTY OF A GENTLEMAN


    Literature

    J. Culme, The Directory of Gold and Silversmiths Jewellers and Allied Traders 1838-1914, From the London Assay Office Registers, Woodbridge, 1987, vol. I, p. 184.