Exquisite & RARE antique French Napoleon I era 95pc vermeil or 18k gold on sterling silver dessert flatware set, a 4pc place setting for TWENTY with extras including twelve teaspoons and three larger serving pieces, all beautifully preserved in the original black leatherette storage and/or presentation chests! WOW, aren't these as scrumptious as can be! All with a beautiful guilloche style engraved or machined pattern, monograms and the knives all have solid carved mother of pearl handles. All pieces except the steel bladed knives bear the 1819-1838 French Michelange or Michelangelo hallmark that dates them between 1819-1838, the tiny number "1" within those marks means they're in at least .950 silver (95% pure and higher than the .925 standard for "sterling" silver). The silversmith marks are for Henri Francoise Charles Gavet, 138 rue Saint-Honore, Paris c. 1820-1832.
A silversmith house during the reigns of Napoleon I, Louis XVIII and Charles X, the house of Gavet (& sons) actually predates Napoleon with Jean Gavet beginning work in the late 18th c. under the reign of Louis XV. Francois-Charles Gavet, Jean's son, was named "Fournisseur du Roi" or "Supplier to the King" in 1782. The last in the line, Henri Francoise Charles Gavet, succeeded Francois-Charles and also was named maker to the king in 1814, so around the time this set was created, he was also doing work directly for, or in the name of, Napoleon Bonaparte or Louis XVIII ! Fantastic and you'd never guess that they're over 200 years old by looking at them, even the boxes are in near mint condition! A set that truly belongs in a museum, rare age, rare style, rare COMPLETE, don't miss them!!
Excellent condition! Just as you see them. There are a few tiny bends to fork tine tips and a bit of tarnish here and there but no loss or even much wear to the vermeil 18k gold plating. Some wear or fading to the vermeil caps and collars or ferules on the knife handles and the steel knife blades are pre-stainless so they do have a bit of age tarnish and/or visible corrosion (see pictures). The boxes are fully intact and with only a few minor scuffs or defects to the exterior, faint evidence of age on the interior but, as you can see, they really must have been kept in a climate controlled safe or something :). 118.6 troy ounces or 3690 grams total weight for the 95 pieces, 76.2 troy ounces or 2370 grams for just the solid silver pieces (pearl handled knives excluded)! See pictures for all individual weights and measurements.
Antique French sterling silver, Georgian jewelry, sewing, Black Forest, etc 17th to 19th c. European
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