A very fine early George III Mug made in London in 1766 by Fuller White.

A very fine early George III Mug made in London in 1766 by Fuller White.



This piece stands on a spreading foot which is decorated with reeding and the plain baluster shaped body rises to an everted rim.  The scroll handle is attached to the main body with oval mouldings and displays leaf capped decoration at the top.  The front, most interestingly, displays some of the finest, and most detailed, engraving we have seen on a mug of this period.  The engraving depicts a ship in full sail with incredibly detailed sails, rigging, pulleys and two sailors on deck.  The ship surmounts the inscription "Pray God prosper the Sally".  Most interestingly, a mermaid is engraved to the left of the ship holding a mirror in which her reflection can be seen.  She is holding a comb in her right hand and her tail is also shown, floating on the waves.  The Mug is in exceptionally good condition and is very well marked in the foot.

The engraving almost certainly refers to "The Sally" which ran aground on the sands in 1769 at Northam Burrows in North Devon while bound from Oporto in Portugal to Bristol with a cargo of port wine.  The wreck can still be seen on the beach and is of national importance because it still retains its key identifying features despite the effects of erosion, with the ship's construction and orientation clearly visible.  An image of the wreck is shown in the image stream.  Fuller White was apprentice to the fine silversmith Edward Feline, which would account for the quality of this piece.  He specialised in drinking vessels, particularly mugs and tankards from his workshops in Noble Street, London.

Height: 4.75 inches.

Diameter of the foot: 3.5 inches.

Weight: 12oz.