ASCAS Association of Small Collectors of Antique Silver
Members' Window # 98
by Alan Yates
(click on images to enlarge)


Although I accumulate silver in general, and have for about 40 years, my main interest is Indian colonial silver. In my experience, the best place to find it is England, and London in particular, but South Africa can also be a happy hunting ground.
While in India during the year 2000, I travelled extensively in Kerala in the south as well as in the so-called 'golden triangle' of Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur in central India.

One would think that one would be spoilt for choice but far from it. However, while in Jaipur I did track down two pieces of flatware, but not Indian. I love the mixture of cultures, the phenomenon otherwise known as the 'global village', and so it proved on this occasion: a South African, born in England, now resident in Austria, on holiday in India discovered two pieces of Chinese export silver flatware in Jaipur.

The first was a fiddle thread and shell pattern dessert spoon, marked Khecheong, Canton, 1840/70.
The inscription on the spoon is worthy of comment. In principle I think that a good monogram or well-done crest or armorial adds to the piece, but not all inscriptions are well done. This is a good FTS pattern dessert spoon, everything is right including the weight but in this case the amateurish, if not very crude, addition of the initials does detract. In my opinion, the initials were probably a later addition. My guess would be that the spoon somehow came into the possession of a servant. He had seen monograms on the cutlery of his employers, and decided to add his initials with nail and a hammer.
The second piece was also Chinese export, a fiddle pattern dessert fork but a Chinese marks unknown to me.
I should like to be able to put a name and date to the mark. Could anyone assist?
Alan Yates
- 2012 -