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Watts, Philadelphia, Coin Silver Twist Handle Aesthetic Preserve Spoon

Watts, Philadelphia, Coin Silver Twist Handle Aesthetic Preserve Spoon
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Although in basics, such as its twisted stem, extensive bright cutting, and shape of the handle end, this 6 5/8" long, .8 T. oz., spoon readily reads as mid 19th century Philadelphia in origin, it also possesses some distinctive individual characteristics.

First are the proportions. The notched edge bowl is over-sized, 2 3/8" by 1 1/2" at the widest, relative to the overall proportions of the piece, suggesting it is a preserve or jelly spoon rather than a (large) sugar, which its length might otherwise indicate.

Second, while the bright cut and wriggle work engraving on the handle is typical of 1860s regional work, the Aesthetic bamboo and feathery detail of the matte finish bowl are more generic and suggest an 1870 date or beyond.

Given this is marked "coin" for the silver standard (along with Watts' "horse head over chevron" emblem), the piece lags the transition from coin to sterling.

In sum, this is much like a typical Philadelphia serving spoon of its time, but enough not so that it is rather singular.

There is a feathered script "SH" monogram inscribed on the handle front. This so integrates with the design that it is not particularly evident.

The backside is plain save for the marks.

In excellent condition, the engraving remains crisp and well-defined, i.e. is free of polishing wear, there are no bends or dents, and the finish shows a warm patina. There are several pinprick dimples on the backside of the bowl, but these do not carry through to the front.

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