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Silver in the Study - The London Silver Vaults

Silver in the Study

Exhibition preview

THE LONDON Silver Vaults Spring selling exhibition 2010, Silver in the Study: Scribing and Passing Time, continues until May 22.

The study is a bolt-hole, for the writer, the loafer and the reader and this year’s exhibition offers smart studies some fabulous Victorian, Edwardian and 20th Century silver, from beautiful desk accessories such as inkstands and blotters, pen trays, paperweights and propelling Victorian pencils, to candlesticks and electric silver lamps.

Bookmarks and bookends lend a library air. After-dinner drinks and smoking require silver cigar requisites, glass and silver match-strikers, drinks trays and decanters, as well as pastimes for loafing over such as board games and silver dice, and sports trophies to reminisce over.

Items in the exhibition include a silver and glass Owl match holder/striker, 1935 Birmingham, Barker Bros (£775, Gideon Cohen); an unusual table lighter in the shape of a pipe, 1906 Sheffield, by John Round (£575, Gideon Cohen); an antique silver inkstand with glass bottles, 1902 London, by Goldsmiths and Silversmiths (£3800, William Walter Antiques); the contemporary Honia electric table lamp by De Vecchi (£3900, Langfords)…

… a rare glass and silver inkpot with fitting for pocket watch, 1905 London, Robert Hosier Halford (£2700, Linden & Co); a collection of silver bookmarks with figured ends (prices from around £25, Peter Weiss); an impressive ink well in the form of a large silver crenellated castle set on a granite stand, Dutch, imported 1924 (£5580, Stephen Kalms); English hallmarked sterling silver hour-glass shaped desk clock fitted in its original case, Birmingham 1906 (Silstar Antiques Ltd)…

…a collection of silver picture frames including and unusual ship frame by James Dudley, London 1896 (£1700, B.L.Collins); a French sealing wax case c1760, made of banded agate, diamond and ruby-set, with its original fitted gold-tooled, Morocco red leather velvet-lined travelling case; an important and most impressive desk accessory which would have contained an essential stick of sealing wax (£4,950, Anthony Green Antiques)…

…and the Trafalgar silver and silver-gilt chess set: the squares on the board created from certified oak and mahogany taken from the original HMS Victory (when it was refurbished in 1905), and the pieces representing Admiral Lord Nelson (silver-gilt) and his opponent French sea lord Villeneuve (silver), modelled by Diarmuid Bryan O’Connor, sculptor of Peter Pan outside Great Ormond Street Hospital (£9500, Langfords).

Times: Daily from 9am to 5.30pm, Saturday from 9am to 1pm.

Location: The Vaults’ 30 shops are situated at the corner of Chancery Lane, WC2 and Southampton Buildings.