A really magnificent inkwell or inkstand, the tray made from a hefty piece of English sterling silver, beautifully shaped with a highly decorative pierced or reticulated gallery.
Standing on three feet, the front of the stand has a double pen rest, in a complimentary design to the feet.
The centre houses a large glass inkwell with a cut star-cut underside mounted with a sterling silver collar and hinged lid. The top is beautifully embossed with a rural scene featuring Gentleman Farmer or Land Owner inspecting the harvest.
Having been retailed by Searle & Co. of 78 & 79 Lombard Street, London, which is in the City of London (Financial District) it was possibly commissioned for a wealthy land owner or a wealthy City Broker. The underside is signed by the retailer.
The inside of the inkwell had a replacement tatty ceramic ink chamber which I discarded at it wasn't fitting. We had our artisan glass maker create a custom liner to fit perfectly.
A splendid and grand piece of Victorian silver. The tray measures 8 1/2" x 7" and standing 3 1/2" at rear. The glass inkwell has a base diameter measuring 4 1/4" in diameter.
The silver is fully hallmarked for London 1899 with the silversmith's initials, for John Grinsell & Sons.