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Basting or serving spoon

Origin: England, London
OL: 15 1/16"; W (bowl): 2 9/16"
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1955-269
Spoon: long ovoid bowl with rat tail; long, slender handle with upturned rounded end and median ridge extending two-thirds length.
Label:Large spoons of basic types are not uncommon in silver. They were especially useful in the service of stews, and they were sometimes referred to in Virginia records as ragout spoons. William Byrd III of Westover, Charles City County, Virginia, for instance, owned in 1769 "four Ragooe Spoons" with a value of £4. These would appear to be the "two raguel spoons" and the "two ragoul spoons" listed in the 1813 will of his widow, Mary Willing Byrd.

During part of its life, at least, this pewter version of the form was apparently used primarily as a basting spoon, for it has a punched hole towards the end of its handle, probably for its convenient hanging in the kitchen.

Provenance:Vendor: Lillian Blankley Cogan, Farmington, Connecticut.

Mark(s):Touch mark on underside of handle indistinct. Secondary mark a quality "X" with probable crown above below touch mark on underside of handle. Partially indistinct pseudo hallmarks (1) lion passant facing right, (2) arms with a St. George's cross in center with a sword in the first and second quarters, (3) "T·L" in script, and (4) leopard's head, each within a shaped reserve on underside of handle (Peal MPM 2887).