The Gilbert spoon

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The Gilbert spoon

The Gilbert family, among them Humphrey and Adrian Gilbert, the half-brothers of Walter Ralegh, were a south Devon family; their houses were Greenway on the Dart and Compton Castle near Torquay. Around the year 1580 the family commissioned a set of spoons from the Exeter goldsmith John Eydes; this was the fourth, as the mark IV shows. Its knop (end) is in the form of a feeding squirrel, the emblem of the family. Engraved on the rear of the bowl are the family arms with the inscription 'DEVON AG 1596', presumably for Adrian Gilbert.

Acknowledgments: RAM Museum