A Chelsea Knife, Red Anchor period, circa 1755

This large white Chelsea octagonal section haft is of pistol-butt form, the end curving to a sharp edge. The design of European flowers issuing from scrolled foliage is clearly influenced by Saint-Cloud. The steel blade is held in place with a scalloped silver ferrule. The blade is stamped GR beneath a crown, and the unidentified cutler’s marks IEE(?) / RIS.

Provenance: An English Private Collection.

Condition: The haft is broken across and restuck close to the ferrule, with a small loss filled in. The ferrule and blade are both good.

Dimensions: Length 26.5 cm (including blade)

A Review of Chelsea, Chelsea-Derby and Derby Knife and Fork Hafts, Tony Stevenson (ECC Transactions, vol. 14, no. 1, 1990).

Cutlery: From Gothic to Art Deco – The J. Hollander Collection, Jan van Trigt (Petraco-Pandora NV, 1999).

Ref. The V&A Museum, London, has a haft of the same design, given by Lady Charlotte Schreiber. Museum number 414:165/B-1885.