An Antique Silver-gilt Cream Ladle by Paul Storr

London, 1815


an unusual design, the bowl decorated with imbrication and beading with a scrolling rim, the handle leading to a elongated terminal comprising of tapering twists of silver wire.

Stamped ‘PS’ for Paul Storr
London, 1815

Length: 9cm

The design is reminiscent of the silverware created by Paul Storr and his contemporaries for the famous art collector William Beckford. Beckford is famous for his immense neo-gothic mansion Fonthill Abbey, which was built to contain his legendary collections of paintings, furniture, ceramics and silver.

The eccentric design differs to the prevailing tastes of the time and points heavily to a commission. Among the surviving works of art known to have been part of Beckford’s collection is a ladle completed by Storr, comprising of a carved Indian jade bowl mounted in gold, which is likewise dated 1815-16 (National Trust for Scotland, Brodick Castle).

A silver-gilt sugar bowl and milk jug by Phillip Rundell, decorated with devices from Beckford’s insignia, provide interesting stylistic comparables. These date to 1819-20 and reside in the National Museum of Scotland (A.1977.207). The tendrilous handles are very much in the same taste as the ladle and echo its twisted terminal.