A Victorian silver centrepiece by Hunt & Roskell, London 1874/1875
Lot 114
A Victorian silver centrepiece by Hunt & Roskell, London 1874/1875
Sold for £34,850 (US$ 57,789) inc. premium
Auction Details
Lot Details
A Victorian silver centrepiece
by Hunt & Roskell, London 1874/1875
The shallow campana-shaped bowl with egg and dart rim and four finely detailed naturalistic doves variously drinking and bathing, the socle stand with gadrooned knop, raised on a square base with gadroon-framed panels and stiff leaf detail to the foot, engraved "Hunt & Roskell, Late Storr & Mortimer 6610," height 47cm, weight 240oz.

Footnotes

  • The inspiration for the design of the present lot appears to be Pliny's Doves, the famous mosaic kept in the Capitoline museum.

    Pliny's describes in his 'Natural History' (XXXVI, 25) a mosaic by Sosus with 'a dove, greatly admired, in the act of drinking, the shadow of its head reflected in the water, while other doves are sunning and grooming themselves on the edge of the bowl'.

    The original mosaic Pliny admired has never been discovered, although in 1737 Cardinal Guiseppe Furietti discovered a fragment of mosaic at the Villa Adriana in Tivoli matching that description. After Furietti's death, his heirs sold two centaurs and the mosaic for 14,000 scudi to the Museo Clementino.

    The composition was very popular as a micromosaic and many were brought back by Gentlemen on their Grand Tours.
Auction information

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Contacts
  1. Loraine Turner
    Specialist - Silver
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