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Oliver Cromwell. An exceptionally fine Commonwealth Caryatid Handled Porringer. Makers Mark of HN with a Bird with Branch below, London, 1658.


This exceptionally fine piece has a baluster form and rises to a plain everted rim. The sides are beautifully chased with trailing foliage, in addition to tulip heads and daffodils. The cast side handles are some of the finest we have seen displaying a caryatid head and upper body, as well as scrolls and bead work. The front is also engraved with the contemporary prick dot initials HW KH, which indicates that this may well have been a marriage piece. The Porringer is in quite excellent condition, with a good colour, and displays crisp marks on the base and original interior hammer marks. This style of decoration was widely seen on the continent at this date and gained even more popularity once the Monarchy was restored under King Charles II in 1660. The makers mark is illustrated in Jacksons, Silver & Gold Marks on page 122 and it would appear that he specialised in the production of cups and porringers.

Height, to the rim: 3.7 inches.

Length, handle to handle: 7.5 inches.

Weight: 13oz