Original Reed & Barton "Les Cinq Fleurs" Sterling Silver Soup Ladle
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One of two floral patterns produced by Reed & Barton that became standard bearers for the company as well as early 20th century, Art Nouveau silver design in general, "Les Cinq Fleurs" is exuberantly expressive. The companion pattern is "Les Six Fleurs."
This piece is very large scale at 12" long overall, and for that reason showcases the intricacies of the design to their fullest. The flowers appear to be orchids and show as an open blossom on the end and midpoint of the handle front, and on the tip of the backside. Other details include trailing leaves and buds languorously draping the remainder of the handle. The surface is subtly textured around the margins of the pattern.
There is an elegant, Old English "S.W." monogram set sideways on the front.
It is as heavy as it is large, weighing just over 8.5 T. oz., while the bowl is exceptionally large at 4" in diameter and 1 1/2" deep. It comfortably holds four liquid ounces. It has a flange rim, ribbed interior, and is finished in a gold wash on both sides.
It is an old, estate, item that is in very fine condition. Polishing wear is nil. The pattern elements retain their original sharp definition and clarity. The finish is bright and even. The bowl is free of dents, nicks, or bends, but shows light surface scratches, more so on the outside, and slight loss of the gold finish in places.
Marks are the Reed & Barton "eagle, R, lion" emblem, and in very fine lettering, "Sterling" and "Pat. May 22, 1900."