Author Topic: Expensive Old English paperweight  (Read 620 times)

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Offline tropdevin

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Expensive Old English paperweight
« on: April 29, 2012, 07:39:45 AM »
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Was anyone watching this Old English paperweight?  It went for a serious amount of money.  I wonder whether the bidders thought it was a Bacchus?  if so, I fear they were mistaken, as the design of the Queen's Head is not the one that Bacchus used - it is the 'square bun' version found in the weights of some unknown English manufacturer(s), and also taken to the US by William Gillinder.  But an interesting weight I would have liked to own - at a much lower price!

Alan

PS. Here are images of the square bun cane and the round bun cane - it is the latter that appears in Bacchus weights.  The square cane has much finer detailing of the features, and an arched base.  The round bun cane has a flat base, and is sometimes so distorted it looks like the silhouette is wearing a bowler hat.
Alan
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Offline Wuff

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #1 on: April 29, 2012, 11:53:08 AM »
With kind permission of the seller I am uploading the images for further reference ... (in 2 parts)
Wolf Seelentag, St.Gallen
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Offline Wuff

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #2 on: April 29, 2012, 11:54:05 AM »
... and the last 2 images:
Wolf Seelentag, St.Gallen
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Offline tropdevin

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #3 on: April 29, 2012, 01:27:51 PM »
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Many thanks, Wuff.

I could believe that the two weights shown below might have come from the same factory - especially the lower one.

Alan
Alan
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Offline johnphilip

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2012, 01:57:59 PM »
So any guesses as to the maker ? i watched it all week thinking is it perhaps Bacchus but i am not that up with P/Ws . 1680quid i believe but at least no 25% auction commision or more . nice weight methinks .


Offline tropdevin

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2012, 03:55:33 PM »
***

Hi.

I think these weights are from one of several yet to be identified UK glass factories that would have made some paperweights in the late 1840s - 1850s, when they were commercially successful items.  None of the paperweights from this era were made by artists in studios - they were commercial products from the factories of hard-nosed Victorian business men. So if they were wanted by the retailers, and profitable, you made some. And if the orders did not come, or dried up, you didn't! 

We know that many Old English paperweights were made in the Birmingham / Stourbridge area (but they may have been made elsewhere too). There were 19 glass manufacturers listed in Birmingham in an 1850 trade directory, and probably as many again in nearby locations such as Stourbridge and Dudley.  Some of these worked in lead crystal glass, and produced high quality pieces - which may have included paperweights. Unfortunately, records of what any particular factory made are usually non-existent. We only associate paperweights with Bacchus and Islington (Rice Harris) because there are contemporary reports – which also mention ‘other makers’.

In the catalogue of the 1851 Great Exhibition there are 100 exhibitors of glass products from the UK – presumably all pretty competent glass manufacturers. Companies included Richardson; Thomas Webb; Davis, Greathead and Green; T Wood (all of Stourbridge); Bacchus & Sons; Lloyd & Summerfied; Oslers; Rice Harris; Chance (all of Birmingham); Molineaux and Webb of Manchester, who won a prize for their flint glass; Wood & Perkes of Barnsley (Wood plus two of his sons worked at Baccarat for a number of years in the 1840s…).  How many of these – and other companies such as William Gammon, James Stevens, Samuel Shakespeare, and John Walsh Walsh (all of Birmingham), who did not exhibit - made paperweights, I wonder?

I have a 1968 book on paperweights that says that Davis, Greathead and Green made some paperweights, as did Thomas Hawkes of Dudley. Sadly, there are no references to the origin of this information.

Alan
Alan
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Offline johnphilip

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Re: Expensive Old English paperweight
« Reply #6 on: April 29, 2012, 04:17:12 PM »
Thanks Alan much appreciated .jp


 

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