Antique Victorian Meriden Britannia Aesthetic Movement – Quadruple Silver Plate Water Pitcher.
This fabulous American silver plate water pitcher was manufactured by the
Meriden Britannia Company of Connecticut. Founded in 1852 by Horace and
Dennis Wilcox, the brothers perfected a silver-plating process for Britannia
and turned the Britannia/Pewter company into a thriving business. This water
pitcher is a fine example of Meriden’s work and is finished in a design
typical of the Aesthetic movement of the late 1800s. The Aesthetic movement
helped reinforce the belief that beautiful objects should exist for the
enjoyment of everyone, not only the elite.
This large pitcher is decorated in a Japonesque style with two thick bands
of embossed leaves and flowers along with an angular handle and finial. The
embossed foliate bands are found along the base and the top of the piece,
while the handle is finished with floral stems at the base and a repeating
foliate motif at the top. The spout itself is also highly decorative and
features a large repousse shell at its base which gives way to a
continuation of the foliate band found at the top of the pitcher. The
uppermost portion of the spout bears a unique image of a group of hunters —
one of whom is depicted standing on a clifftop hunting a pair of walrus on
the beach below while two others confront a large bear standing on its back
The pitcher is finished in high quality quadruple silver plate, a method of
production reserved for luxury pieces offered at the high end of the market
and bears a circular mark reading “QUADRUPLE PLATE”. This mark dates
production of the piece on or before 1896 when this mark was retired. There
is another circular mark present which reads “MERIDEN B COMPANY” and the
numeral “193” denoting the item number.
The piece stands 13″ tall to the top of its finial and is 10″ from the tip
of the spout to the back end of the handle. The foot is 6.6″ in diameter.
The pitcher is quite substantial and weighs in at 5 lbs 3 oz.
The pitcher is in very good condition. A great piece for American Aesthetic
collectors or fans of fine American silver plate.
1 in stock