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A VICTORIAN SILVER-MOUNTED CUT-GLASS CLARET-JUG
These lots have been imported from outside the EU … Read more Zoomorphic Claret-Jugs The fashion for mounting jugs in silver or silver-gilt can be dated back to the 16th century with examples in tigerware and Iznik pottery dating from the 1580s (see Christie’s, London, 19 November 2002, lot 144). It was in the last quarter of the 19th century however that silversmiths reached the zenith of creativity with a series of silver-mounted zoomorphic claret-jugs. It is generally accepted that the silversmith Alexander Crichton started this trend not long after he entered into partnership with John Curry in 1880. Indeed the earliest apparent entry in the design registration records for such a zoomorphic jug was granted on 16 August 1880 to Crichton & Curry for an owl jug, quickly followed by a walrus, a duck and a drake. Other silversmiths followed Crichton’s lead as shown by an design registration grant made to S. Mordan & Co for an eagle on 4 November 1881 (see the online catalogue of the Kent Collection of Claret Jugs). It has been suggested that Crichton’s inspiration for these whimsical creations was the illustrations of Sir John Tenniel’s in Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass and indeed claret jugs in the form of the Walrus and the Carpenter are known (see M. Clayton, Christie’s Pictorial History of English and American Silver, Oxford, 1985, p. 288, pl. 10). While some silversmiths continued producing examples into the 20th century (see Christie’s, London, 26-27 November 2013, lot 488 and lot 302 in the present sale), the greatest volume of production was in the early years of the 1880s. The short period of production and their fragility accounts for the relatively small number of examples that survive.
A VICTORIAN SILVER-MOUNTED CUT-GLASS CLARET-JUG

MARK OF WILLIAM LEUCHARS, OVER-STRIKING ANOTHER, LONDON, 1883

Details
A VICTORIAN SILVER-MOUNTED CUT-GLASS CLARET-JUG
MARK OF WILLIAM LEUCHARS, OVER-STRIKING ANOTHER, LONDON, 1883
In the form of a carp, the glass body cut and moulded with scales, the head and tail chased with fluted scales, applied with glass eyes and the mouth with hinged cover, marked on side and tail
15 ½ in. (39.4 cm.) long
Special Notice

These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.

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Lot Essay

The carp must rate as among the rarest of the zoomorphic claret-jugs. The design registration to Henry Lewis for a carp claret jug is listed on 18 February 1882 (see the online catalogue of the Kent Collection of Claret Jugs). The example in the Kent Collection differs having a much more robust glass body as well as an extra pair of fins. The present lot has the addition of a hinged cover within the mouth which is not apparent on the Kent example.

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