Possible the oldest manufacture silversmith company in the world, the origin of this business having been established by Anthony Nelme, circa 1680. This fabulous London sterling silver 'Georgian' plate or serving dish carries the makers hallmark "E E over B over J W" in a quatrefoil, indicating the Edward, Edward Jnr, John & William Barnard mark used from 1829-1846. Other hallmarks include the standard mark for sterling of a lion; the city mark for London of an uncrowned leopard, circa 1822 and forward; duty mark of Queen Victoria, circa 1833-1890 and the date letter 'I" indicating the year 1844.
The plate or serving dish is octagonal in shape, measuring 9 5/8" across and weighs 19.285 ounces. Decorated with a gadrooned border and hand engraved with an Armorial Crest of Arms consisting of two Rampant Lions each holding an oval shield with Crown above and below a ribbon inscribed in Latin "Uni Aequus Virtuti" meaning "Just One Power". On one shield is inscribed in Latin "Nemo Impune Lacessit" meaning "No one attacks me with impunity", which is the motto of Scotland and the Order of the Thistle.
This item was last presented to the previous owners as a wedding gift in 1958 and has spent the time since then in a cloth bag with an embroidered label "B Altman & Co. - Fifth Ave". The B Altman & Co. was an American department store and chain founded in 1865 in New York City by Benjamin Altman. It had its flagship store at fifth avenue and 34th street in Manhattan from 1906 until the company closed its doors in 1989. The back of the plate is engraved "R * P over M over December 27, 1958" to commemorate their wedding date. This addition in no ways detracts from the beauty and rarity of this fabulous item. The plate is in excellent condition with no damages and very few light marks which show from certain angles. It has not been polished and exhibits a wonderful light patina built up over the years of storage.
If you collect 'Georgian' sterling from the mid-1800's this is a must have item for you.