Queen Anne Silver Chamberstick


Stock: 7725

Date: 1704

Maker: Simon Pantin

Country: England

A rare early English silver chamber stick (also known as a go to bed) with the solid design and excellent...

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A rare early English silver chamber stick (also known as a go to bed) with the solid design and excellent heavy gauge silver as you’d expect from this date. It has the early form with a flat teardrop handle and broad drip pan. The circular base is hand engraved with the crest of a crowned lion’s head erased between two plumes, all mounted on three small stump feet.

Weight 225 grams, 7.25 troy ounces.

Diameter 11.5 cms, 4.5 inches. Length 17 cms.

Britannia standard silver*.

London 1704.

By Simon Pantin.

Literature: Chambersticks first made an appearance in the 17th century and early examples are now very hard to find. Originally they were made in sets as a household would need many chamber sticks. They were used for lighting the way to bed and because of the movement created when they were carried about they needed a large drip pan to catch the wax. The earliest examples have straight handles (first flat, then tubular) which were superseded in the first part of the 18th century by a ring handle. Gradually the design evolved and from the mid 18th century onwards they usually had a matching conical snuffer although from about 1790 onwards some were made with an aperture at the base of the stem to take a pair of scissor snuffers.

*Britannia Standard silver. In 1696, so extensive had become the melting and clipping of coinage that the silversmiths were forbidden to use the sterling standard for their wares, but had to use a new higher standard, 95.8 per cent. New hallmarks were ordered, “the figure of a woman commonly called Britannia” and the lion’s head erased (torn off at the neck) replacing the lion passant and the leopard’s head crowned. This continued until the old standard of 92.5 per cent was restored in 1720. Britannia standard silver still continues to be produced even today.


This superb silver chamberstick is in excellent condition. Very heavy quality and superb colour. Crisp engraving. With a full set of English silver marks, all very clear apart from the Britannia mark which is badly struck. 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

Maker: Simon Pantin

Simon Pantin (1666-1733) came from a long line of Rouen goldsmiths dating back to the late 16th century when Jacob Pantin, Simon’s great-great grandfather first entered the distinctive peacock maker’s mark which continued to be used by successive generations of the Pantin family. Simon came to England in the early 1680’s as a refugee when his family fled the Huguenot persecution in France. The Pantins settled within the Rouen protestant community in London where they already had existing family members. Simon’s father had been a practising goldsmith in France and his son Simon was apprenticed to the prestigious Pierre Harache, also from Rouen, in 1686. Freed from his apprenticeship in 1693, aged 27, Simon finally obtained his freedom of the Goldsmith’s Company in 1701 and entered his first mark (Britannia Standard) 3 weeks later giving an address in St Martins Lane. Simon subsequently moved nearby to Castle St at “the sign of the peacock” in 1706 where he remained until his death in 1733. 2nd mark 1717, 3rd mark (Sterling) 1720. All marks incorporated the Pantin trademark “peacock”. Livery, October 1712. Simon married (date unknown) Marthe de Joncourt, a Huguenot refugee from Saint-Quentin in France and they had at least 7 children of whom 3 died young and 3 became goldsmiths – Elizabeth (Eliza Godfrey), Simon II and Lewis Pantin. Simon took 9 apprentices, all Huguenot, including Augustin Courtauld, Peter Courtauld, Abraham Buteux (his nephew and godson) and Simon Pantin II (his son). Simon Pantin’s extensive work includes many fine specimens on display in museums and institutions worldwide including the beautiful tureen in the Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg and the 1724 “Bowes” tea set in the Metropolitan Museum, New York. His expert technique, elegant style and minimal use of decoration was ideally suited to his main output of domestic teawares (tea canisters, teapots and kettles) and expertly cast candlesticks. biography extracted from Sandra Robinson's "Simon Pantin & His Children"

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