A Chelsea Knife and Fork, circa 1750-55

Of small size, the hafts are moulded with flowering prunus branches, in the manner of the blanc de chine porcelains of Dehua. Inspired by French porcelain, prunus moulding of this type tends to date to the Raised Anchor period at Chelsea. The fork has three tines on a steel baluster stem. The curved steel blade is stamped with indistinct cutler’s marks. Silver ferrules, one of which is scalloped.

Provenance: An English Private Collection.

Condition: The fork haft is in good order, with no damage or restoration. From manufacture, there are two small, speckled kiln ‘touches’ to the glaze and some misfiring. The knife haft has a 2.5 cm hairline close to the ferrule, but no other damage and no restoration.

Dimensions: Knife length 21 cm (including blade); Fork length 18.5 cm (including tines)

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).