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Ewer

Copper, with tin plating in imitation of silver

Origin: North Italy

Date: Mid 16th century

32.4 cm height

Bequeathed by C.D.E. Fortnum, 1899; WA1899.CDEF.B1045

T. Schroder (2009), no. 592

Tinned copper vessels were made as inexpensive substitutes for display silver. The process was very cheap and was done by dipping the finished copper vessel into molten tin. This ewer conforms to standard Renaissance design in Italy and northern Europe, with its division of the ovoid-shaped body into three horizontal bands. In terms of its decoration, however, it borders on Mannerism. Similar elements appear in design engravings by Enea Vico in the 1540s.

Information derived from T. Schroder, British and Continental Gold and Silver in the Ashmolean (2009)