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Whiting Mfg. Co. Sterling Pierced Art Nouveau Napkin Ring - Circa 1905
This stunning napkin ring has a wonderful flowing floral pattern. The rims are done with a scalloped edge created from small curlicues and small leaves. The interior openwork pattern is comprised of beautiful scrolling leaves and the occasional five petal flower. The pattern work has light dimension and lovely fine line detailing. The front center of the ring has an applied shield that has been engraved with presentation. It is done in a lovely flowing script that appears to possibly read "ICW". The ring is in excellent minus condition and has great shape. It is within an approx. 1/16" of roundness, which is amazing as that much openwork does not stabilize a shape very well. With a loupe I can find approx. eight tiny cracks at joints connecting the openwork patterns. But approx. half of them are surface only. There are no holes, rips, deep scratches, abrasions, nasty dents or missing pieces. I do see a couple spots on the interior with a different flow to the sterling that correspond to surface cracks on the exterior-original to manufacture or possible past repairs. The marks are all hand engraved on the interior bottom rim and can be seen in the insert on photo # 7. There is a shield/lion mark for Whiting, "STERLING" and an "A.L.T" but no pattern/design number for the ring which is unusual for this time period. I can only guess the A.L.T. is for a special order code or a smith's own initials for a personal gift. The napkin ring is nicely substantial, not flimsy, and weighs 1.25 ozs. It measures approximately 1 1/2" tall with a 1 5/8" diameter.
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