This is a very rare and unusual Irish silver jug. In fact, all covered jugs are rare. A lovely scroll handle with carved ivory insulators has a reeded edge and terminates at the base with a shell applique.
One side exhibits exceptional engraving of swirling foliate design around an oval cartouche engraved with the arms of a rampant lion holding a staff and flag. A banner below the lion contains the motto 'Plutot Rompe Que Plie' (Sooner Break Than Bend). Above the cartouche is an engraved figure of Neptune.
The opposite side is decorated with stunning and very rare original repoussé of a sailing ship amongst waves. With the engraving of Neptune and the nautical scenery, this was clearly meant to be used on a yacht or as a prize.
This rare example of Irish silver is fully hallmarked underneath. The handle is marked with the sovereigns head. The grapevine finial on the hinged cover is a period replacement and is stamped with English sovereign head and lion passant hallmarks. The jug measures 10.75 inches to the top of the handle, weighs 25.40 troy ounces and is in excellent antique condition.