Georgian Silver Tea Kettle


Stock: 9823

Date: 1825

Maker: Benjamin Smith

Country: England

Of sporting interest. A magnificent antique sterling silver tea kettle (also known as a samovar or hot water kettle) with...

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Of sporting interest. A magnificent antique sterling silver tea kettle (also known as a samovar or hot water kettle) with a scene of horses hunting to hounds. The kettle is all over decorated with flowers, foliage, scrolls and cast borders. It has a pretty flower lid finial and folding ivory handle. The matching silver tea kettle stand has an ornate cast and pierced frieze with flowers and leaves; the integral burner has a detachable cap to insert the oil and wick. An excellent piece with heavy gauge silver and good colour. Hand engraved to the top of the burner is a stag crest.

Contains 1400 ml.
Total weight 1945 grams, 62.5 troy ounces.
Total height 31.5cm (to top of handle), 23cm (to top of kettle) .
London 1825.
Makers Benjamin Smith and Richard Sibley.
Sterling silver.

Defra ivory registration SRGNL91G.

Marks. All pieces are stamped with a full set of English silver hallmarks, the stamp on the burner lid is rubbed however the date letter and duty mark can be seen clearly. There are 2 makers – Benjamin Smith II and Richard Sibley I. All pieces are date stamped “k” for London 1825. The kettle has the makers stamp for Benjamin Smith, the kettle stand has the makers stamp for Richard Sibley. There must have been a collaboration between the two London silversmiths as this piece appears to be fully original – the styling matches and all pieces are same date and fit snugly together.

Literature: Tea Kettles date from Queen Anne times these were made until the 1770’s when the tea urn took over the job of providing hot water. Although kettles were still made between 1770 and 1840 they were less common until Victorian times when they were reintroduced, probably because of the discovery of odourless spirit for the burners.


The tea kettle is in very good condition. There is a wear mark on the ivory handle.

Maker Information

Maker: Benjamin Smith

Benjamin Smith II, London silversmith. Originally of Birmingham, born 15 December 1764, first marriage 1788. Grimwade records first mention of Benjamin Smith through a 3rd party recommendation as 'an Ingeneous Chaser' in 1790 to Matthew Boulton at Birmingham. By September 1792 the firm of Boulton and Smith, latchet manufacturers was in existence. In 1801 Benjamin withdrew from the partnership and went to London. On 1 February 1802, Benjamin married for a second time to Mary Shiers at Greenwich Church and was presumably setting up the workshop there. First mark, in partnership with Digby Scott, 4 October 1802. Second mark together, 21 March 1803. The partnership apparently dissolved by 11 May 1807, when Smith entered a third separate mark. Fourth mark, 25 June 1807. Fifth mark in partnership with his brother James 1809. Sixth separate mark, 1812. Seventh mark, 1814. Eighth mark in partnership with his son Benjamin, 1816. Ninth mark alone again, 1818. By his first marriage Smith had four sons, of whom Benjamin was the eldest and three daughters, and by Mary Shiers a fourth daughter in 1803 at Greenwich. His third son Digby, born 2 June 1797, may be assumed to be the godson of Digby Scott. It appears that Smith was of a difficult and probably irascible nature and is this borne out by the variations in his entry of marks with and without partners. His firm was of course, together with Storr, manufacturing almost entirely for Rundell and Bridge, and it seems that the later may have supported Smith's move to London. The firm's most important production is probably The Jamaica Service of 1803 in The Royal Collection. The silver-gilt trays, baskets, and wine coasters with open-work vine borders are among the most distinctive and accomplished achievements. The designs, so closely related to those of Storr, most almost certainly stemmed from central control by Rundell and Bridge. Benjamin Smith III, eldest son of Benjamin Smith II, apprenticed to his father 1808, free 1821. 1st mark with his father 1816. 2nd mark alone. 3rd mark, 2 sizes, 1822. 4th mark, 2 sizes, 1837. Livery 1842. Died 1850.

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