Rat tailed spoon

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Rat tailed spoon

Regarding this piece Mr Jeremy Pearson has written as follows: This handsome silver trefid spoon is in most respects very typical of its period, which from the pricked inscription on the terminal one suspects is slightly before 1680. The initials R.B. pricked in the same place are probably those of the first owner. The unusual decorative feature, which underlines the fine quality of the piece, is the well-modelled acanthus leaf pattern around the strengthening rat tail on the back of the bowl. The maker's punch, struck four times on the back of the stem, is a crowned Roman X between two pellets and within a circle of pellets. This readily identifies the spoon as an Exeter-made piece, although alas one cannot with certainty attribute this fine spoon to any one of the thirteen silversmiths working in the city at this period. The spoon was excavated in a mid 18th-century fill of a pit in Goldsmith Street.

Acknowledgments: RAM Museum Exeter Archaeology