Delicate Antique French Silver Asparagus Tongs By Debain ~Sold~

By the same Alphonse DEBAIN which designed the Chimera head Asparagus Tongs that we have already presented to you here is another example of his fine work.
The tongue has a beautiful ‘cutaway’ detail with floral and foliage scrolls decorating its side.
The design is also present on the sides and the knob is covered with a silver rose.
The centre of the piece holds a medallion with the initials CMA.

It is a ‘Main Pince’ or Silver Asparagus Tongs, which was created by the Maitre Orfèvre Alphonse DEBAIN in Paris.
Debain became quite known and specialized in this model (the Main Pince) which was actually discussed in the official publications of the Exposition Universelle De Paris in 1889, under the exact same design as our piece!
The Tongs fit perfectly in the hand and are in an exquisite condition with the spring located in the hinged joint still working perfectly.
Though it is meant to serve Asparagus it may also be used as a bread or pastry server.

The bonus with this particular Asparagus Server is the fact that it comes in its original presentation box which in fine condition! The first time we have seen these Main Pince’s in a box actually!
The added bonus is the fact that the box was actually done by Tiffany & Co for their store which was at the time located at 36 bis Avenue de l’Opéra and had opened in 1868. Hence Tiffany retailed, it seems, Alphonse Debain’s Silver masterpieces! This precise store is no longer open, but recently Tiffany did re open a lovely store on the Champs Elysées.

It weights 4.10 troy ounces

The Hallmark is Minerve 1 -1st title – Hence 1838 to 1919 – Paris
The Makers Mark is for Alphonse DEBAIN
Alphonse DEBAIN was the son of Alphonse Edouard DEBAIN and his Mark was registered on March 19th 1883 – It was cancelled (biffé) on March 8th 1911

H: 3.9"Reference number: CC-121