Mortimer & Hunt, successors to Paul Storr, Extremely Fine English Sterling Four Light Candelabrum, London, 1840/41
Outstanding classical design makes this a stunning candelabrum. A triangular plinth base is supported by three boldly cast lion feet with acanthus leaf decoration. A beautiful, tapered, fluted column emerges from wonderfully cast foliage. This fluted design continues outwards along the curved arms covered in cast and applied fluid, scrolling foliage. A single cast flower drops from each arm, an acknowledgment of the increasingly popular rococo taste. One central nozzle stretches upwards from foliate decoration. This piece retains exceptional surface detail.
The base of the candelabrum is fully marked and stamped 'Mortimer & Hunt'. All of the detachable pieces including the socles, original bobeches and drip pans bear the correct date and lion passant (sterling) marks. One side of the plinth base is finely engraved with a coat of arms. It measures 28.75 inches high, weighs 180 troy ounces and is in excellent antique condition, with the exception that one flower is an (excellent) modern replacement.
Mortimer & Hunt(1839-1843) were successors to 'Storr & Mortimer, Goldsmiths and Jewellers to Her Majesty' (1822-1839). The famous silversmith Paul Storr founded the company in 1792 under the name Storr & Co, and took John Mortimer as a partner in 1822 and John Samuel Hunt, Storr's nephew (who had been working for Storr as a silversmith since 1810), as a third partner in 1826.
When Paul Storr retired from the firm on December 31, 1838, John Samuel Hunt's son John Hunt became a third partner and they did business as Mortimer & Hunt. When John Mortimer retired in 1843, the Hunts took Robert Roskell as a partner, continuing the business as 'Hunt & Roskell'. They continued to be one of Europe's finest silversmithing firms, selling to Queen Victoria and many members of Europe's royal and aristocratic families and exhibiting at important international exhibitions including the 'Crystal Palace' exhibition of 1851.
For biographical information see:
John Culme, The Directory of Gold & Silversmiths: Jewelers and Allied Traders 1838-1914, Volume 1, p. 245.
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