The World’s Most Expensive Silverware
One of the oldest precious metals, silver has been used to fabricate some of the first tools and currency used by mankind. The earliest silver mines recorded were located in Anatolia (now Turkey), in the 5th century BC, and the metal was exported for tableware used by Greek and Roman aristocracy.
More than a utilitarian good, however, silver was used even as a disinfectant prior to the invention of penicillin, its antimicrobial properties also beneficial for its use in cutlery, plates and everyday household items.
Antique silver sets are prized for their craftsmanship, legacy, provenance, rarity and are symbolic of status and luxury. Although table services and flatware do not hold quite the same cultural significance as they once did, they remain somewhat popular and important to many and continue to hold their intrinsic value. Some sets even sell at auction for millions. Below, read more about three of the most expensive pieces of silverware yet.
Germain Soup Tureen $10 million
If you already felt uncomfortable eating off of your grandmother’s silver service, how would you feel sipping soup from the same bowl used by French King Louis XV? The custom made silver soup tureen that hammered at Sotheby’s New York for $10 million in 1996 was custom-crafted by icon silversmith and craftsman, Thomas Germain. The piece is one of the few surviving after the majority of silver was melted to finance the French Revolution and other momentous battles. Its intricately designed lid features flora and fauna motifs, adding to its beauty and value.
George II Silver Coffee Pot $7 million
In 2013, Christie’s London auctioned what would become the most expensive piece of British silverware ever sold. The George II silver coffee pot sold for almost $7 million. The exquisite Rococo-style piece was commissioned by John Lequesnie, Knight and director of the Bank of England, in 1738, and was handcrafted by Paul de Lamerie.
Antique American Punch Silver Bowl $5.9 million
This particular piece set a new record for American silverware, selling for $5.9 million at Sothebys in 2010, and shockingly surpassing its estimate of $400,000 to $800,000. Cornelius Kierstede crafted the bowl in the early 1700s in New York. Once owned by Commodore Joshua Loring, the bowl weighs over 4.4 pounds and is the first piece of silverware of its kind to surpass $1 million.
Whether you have a collection of Wallace Grand Baroque flatware or a Tiffany & Co. tea service, the loan officers at The Loan Companies can make a very competitive offer to loan against your fine silver tableware. Kindly contact one of our location nearest you for more information or to make an appointment.