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Solid Sterling Silver Georgian Asparagus Serving Tongs IB Maker 1800

Solid Sterling Silver Georgian Asparagus Serving Tongs IB Maker 1800
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A large item, this pair of tongs measure 9 1/2 long, weigh 6.5 T. oz., and are 1 1/14" wide at the top arch.

Used for serving asparagus, the long, narrow, grips have ribbed or channeled inner surfaces, with the lower one having a notched end to keep the stalks from sliding off.

There is a removable crossbar attached with double screws; this governs the movement of the arms.

Having a date letter for 1800, they are Georgian in period and style, exhibiting a "French Thread" aka "Fiddle Thread" lined pattern.

The arch is inscribed with a circular buckled crest with an upraised arm holding a battleaxe set above this. The phrase "pro libertate patriae" (for the liberty of my country) on the banding, while the inner loop is engraved "JHMD" in feathered script lettering.

Solid sterling silver, it is marked with a "bust, lion, E" and maker "IB." Grimwade's London Goldsmiths 1697-1837 offers numerous possibilities for maker, among them Joseph Benard, James Beattie, and John Blades, where the shape of the cartouche, the letters without a pellet between them, and the registration dates as silversmiths closely match.

This could not be in better condition, especially notable for a piece that is over two centuries old. There is no visible wear, repairs, or any damage such as bends or cracks. The finish shows a rich patina that clearly has never been other than hand polished.

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