Antique Commonwealth Silver Wine Taster


Stock: 7794

Date: 1654

Country: England

A rare early English silver dish of circular shallow form with simple wire handles. The design of punched beading and...

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A rare early English silver dish of circular shallow form with simple wire handles. The design of punched beading and lobes is typical of the period and forms a flower design in the base of the bowl. Weight 41 grams, 1.3 troy ounces. Height 2 cms. Diameter 8 cms. Spread across handles 10.5 cms. English silver hallmarks stamped around the edge for London 1654. Makers mark IW* (Jacksons P.120).

Literature: The saucer shaped taster was already in use as early as the 14th century BC in Minoan Crete and has been essential in the production of wine right through to the present time. It is used by the sommelier to determine a wine’s quality by assessing the color, clarity, bouquet and taste.

The majority of wine tasters in existence are French. The owners often engraved their name on the taster whose single flat handle often accommodated a neck cord. Very few English wine tasters were made because wine was not a national product however a number were produced during a short period in the second half of the 17th century. These English examples are rare and anything after this date is even rarer. The early English examples were in the shape of a flat bowl, often with simple wire handles (these often have original rough soldering which can appear “blobby”).

Signed/Inscribed: *There are no precise records of silver makers marks prior to 1681 as all records were destroyed in the fire at Goldsmiths Hall in that year when the Assay Office and apartments of the Assayer and Clerk in the south west wing of the building were burned down.


This delightful antique silver bowl is in very good condition with no damage or restoration. Good patina. Clear hallmarks. The top edge of the bowl is slightly "not round". There are rough soldering marks where the handles are attached to the body which appear to be original. Please note that this item is not new and will show moderate signs of wear commensurate with age. Reflections in the photograph may detract from the true representation of this item.

Maker Information

No maker assigned

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