Elizabeth I West Country Seal Top spoon
Elizabeth I West Country Seal Top spoon
Elizabeth I West Country Seal Top spoon

Elizabeth I West Country Seal Top spoon

1585 United Kingdom

Offered by Sanda Lipton

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Highly collectable Elizabeth I silver West Country seal top spoon of extremely good form and patina. Made by Steven More of Totnes in circa 1585. Signs of gilding are still visible on the seal, which is joined to the stem by a lap join. The top of the seal has the date 1652 pinpricked in the centre with the initials M P pinpricked above and M D beneath the date.

It is intriguing to surmise why the date pinpricked on the top of the seal is some sixty years later than the approximate date that the spoon was made. It may well have been a marriage or an anniversary. Steven More was buried in Totnes on July 24th 1613. He was admitted to freedom at Exeter in 1560-3 and was still there when his son was baptised in 1572. However, More had migrated to Totnes by 1574 when his second son was baptised there. See "West Country Silver Spoons and their Marks" by Timothy Kent. The earliest recorded English seal top spoon was circa 1525 but the majority of these spoons were made in the 17th century and their popularity faded out by the end of that century. The seal top finials were never intended to be used as a seal.

6.6 inches (16.8 cm) long
Excellent condition with a very good patina. The latter half of the maker's mark is very clear on the base of the back of the stem but the cinquefoil in the bowl is lightly struck and only partially visible
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Sanda Lipton

Sanda Lipton
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