Maker's mark of Paul de Lamerie
Diameter: 30.4cm, 12in.
Weight: 1,202g, 38 oz 13 dwt
Paul de Lamerie arrived in England with his Huguenot parents in or before 1689, having been baptized at 's Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands in 1688. In 1703 he was apprenticed to the Huguenot goldsmith Pierre Platel, and after being admitted to the freedom of the Goldsmiths' Company, he registered his first mark and set up a workshop in Windmill Street, Soho, in 1712. He took thirteen apprentices between 1715 and 1749 who paid premiums varying between £10 and £45m In 1716 he married Louisa Juliott, also a Huguenot, and by her had six children, three of whom died in childhood. Little more of his personal history is known, although his career in the Goldsmiths' Company is comparatively well documented. By 1717, he was already referred to as 'the King's Silversmith' but again in a complaint 'for making and selling Great quantities of Large Plate which he doth not bring to Goldsmith's Hall to be mark't according to Law.' He joined the livery in 1717; fourteen years later he was elected to the court of assistants. In 1743 he was appointed fourth warden and in 1747 second warden; that he never became prime warden probably due to ill health. From the outset he had wealthy clients such as the Honourable George Treby and the Duke of Sutherland. Among his more important later patrons were Sir Robert Walpole, Baron Anson, and the fifth Earl of Mountrath. A gradual expansion of his business culminated in his move in 1739 to considerably larger premises in Gerrard street. His pre-eminent position in the trade is signified by the commission he received in 1740 from the Goldsmiths' Company to provide two of their most splendid pieces of ceremonial display plate, a silver-gilt inkstand and the famous rococo ewer and dish.Description
The arms are those of Mildmay quartering Fitzwalter with Schomberg on an escutcheon of pretence, for Benjamin Mildmay, 19th Baron Fitzwalter (1672-1756), created Earl Fitzwalter in 1730.
Circular and with gadrooned border, the rim engraved with a coat-of-arms on one side and slightly later with a crest below an earl's coronet on the other, marked underneath, further engraved with a number and scratchweight 'No 3 39:17'
Mildmay's marriage at age 51 to Frederica, eldest daughter of Meinhardt, Duke of Schomberg, prompted Lady Mary Wortley Montagu to write to her sister that the bride-to-be was "...sunk in all the Joys of happy love notwithstanding she wants the use of her 2 hands by a Rheumatism, and he has an arm that he can't move. I wish I could send you the particulars of this Amour, which seems to me as curious as that between 2 oysters, and as well worth the serious Enquiry of the Naturalists" (B. Wees, English, Scottish and Irish Silver at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, New York, 1997, p. 153.)
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