Sir Henry Hobart 1st Bt. (d.1625) was the son of Thomas Hobart of Plumstead, Norfolk, and his wife Audrey, daughter of William Hare of Beeston. His great-grandfather was Sir James Hobart, attorney general to King Henry VII. Admitted to Lincoln's Inn in 1575 and becoming a governor of the inn in 1591, he represented variously St Ives, Yarmouth, and Norwich in parliament. On the succession of King James I he was knighted and in 1606 reached his great-grandfather's rank as attorney general. Five years later he was created a baronet, and subsequently chancellor and keeper of the Great Seal to Charles, Prince of Wales as well as, later, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas and judge of the assizes in various counties. He appears to have made an enemy of Bacon with whom he jockeyed for position throughout his career, and who later said of Hobart that he was 'falsely affecting intimacy with great persons'. This seems, however, to have been the minority view as he was elsewhere described as a learned and prudent judge without subservience to the crown. At the assizes he mediated with the creditors of poor prisoners and lodged his protestations against importing grain until the price of local harvests had risen.
He married Dorothy (d.1641), daughter of Sir Robert Bell Kt. of Beaupré Hall, Norfolk, lord chief baron under Elizabeth I, and they had sixteen children. They made their home at Blickling, Norfolk where they had married in 1590. The manor of Blickling, which was recorded in the Domesday Book, had belonged to Harold, King of England and Earl of East Anglia, and was given by William the Conqueror to his chaplain whom he named Bishop of Thetford. Later owners of the property included Sir John Fastolf in 1431 and Geoffrey Boleyn, his protege and the great-grandfather of Anne Boleyn. The fall of the Boleyn family fortunes saw the estate pass to Sir Robert Clere, who in 1616 sold it to Sir Henry Hobart, his tenant since at least the time of his marriage. Sir Henry built the present Blickling Hall, and died there on 26 December, 1625.
Parallels can be drawn between the engraved vine ornament on this cup and the chased decoration on two steeple cups of 1604 and 1605, one with cover now lacking, in the collection of the Kremlin, illustrated in C. Oman, English Silver in the Kremlin 1557-1663, London, 1961, nos. 17 and 34b.