A Lovely Antique French Silver and Cut Crystal Ewer by Maître Orfèvre Emile PUIFORCAT.
In French we call them ‘Aiguière’ and this one is particularly elegant.
It is distinguished by its fine workmanship, elegant form, harmonious proportions and its lovely decoration.
The ornate base showcases geometrical designs as well as ribbon laced reeds and tulip chutes while the lower part of the crystal vessel is completely covered by a beautifully cut out silver frame which is decorated with laurel leaf garlands.
The crystal itself is wheel cut in its upper part while the center of the body is engraved with a laurel garland.
The collar is beautifully circled by a silver floral décor with acanthus leaves chutes and silver ribbons holding up laurel garlands.
The handle is beautifully worked with laurel leaf scrolls and the lid is topped by a blooming rose.
A beautiful piece, typical of the Claret ‘Aiguieres’ that became so popular in the mid to late 1800s
No losses to the crystal. A few marks on the body due to usage.
The Hallmark is Minerva 1-1st title (950/1000) – 1838 -1919– Paris
The Makers Mark is for Emile PUIFORCAT, and was registered in 1857; it features an E and a P separated by a standing feather.
The mark is still so famous it does deserve a bit more explanations:
Emile PUIFORCAT inherited the business from his uncle Jean Baptiste FUCHS who specialized in flatware in the early 1800s. Emile Puiforcat moved from the offices of his uncle right next door at number 18, then 16 of Rue Chapon. While he died in 1883, his mark was kept by his successor as well as his grandson Jean, who passed away in 1945.
Until the 1880 the House of Puiforcat remained in the flatware business, but expended into the larger pieces to include presentations plates and platters.
Though very praised for its craftsmanship PUIFORCAT never participated in the Fairs that did so much for the Silver business in the 1800. The house continued on through the years and was finally bought by Hermes in 1993.