This wonderful pewter inkwell was made by Payne Silversmith in the 1930s. It is a souvenir of the Great Tom, the bell in Tom Tower at Christ Church, Oxford. Great Tom is the loudest bell in Oxford and has quite an interesting history going back hundreds of years.
The inkwell is hand hammered. A strip at the bottom is impressed with: “Great Tom of Oxford 1680 132 CWT.” The lid is hinged. The insert is hand blown glass with a polished base. We believe it is likely the original, or a replacement that was made for the inkwell. It is a tall insert and fits well. The bottom of the inkwell is marked “Payne Silversmith Oxford English Pewter.” Payne & Son is still owned and run by the same family that started the company in the late 1700s.
A company spokesperson verified that this inkwell was made by them, likely in the 1930s.
SIZE: Height is about 4 1/2 inches. Diameter at the base is just under 3 1/2 inches and at the top about 2 5/8 inches.
CONDITION: This inkwell is in very good condition. The lid is slightly misshapen; it looks as though something bumped it hard enough to push one side in slightly. This is most noticeable when looking at the open lid. Otherwise, we see no cracks or dents in the metal. The insert is in excellent condition.
1930s Pewter Souvenir Bell Inkwell, Payne Silversmiths Oxford