Lovely set of four Antique French Silver Salt Cellars by ‘Maître Orfèvre’ Emile PUIFORCAT
These lovely French Silver open salt caddies or cellars are decorated in the Louis XV Style, their oval shapes resting on gadroon lined ‘piédouches’ or pedestals.
The silver bodies are decorated with beautifully rendered laurel wreaths and garlands as well as ribbons, typical of Puiforcat’s refined work.
The upper edge is lined with laurel leaves.
The interior of the caddies or cellars are coated in 18 carat gold or ‘vermeillé’, which shows through the original clear glass inserts.
Four dainty spoons complete the set and are original to it. They show an exquisite swan stretching its wings on the lower register of the spoon handle, as well as a laurel garland and a laurel wreath tied with a flowing ribbon.
The spoon bowls are coated in gold.
The salt cellars and spoons are in very good condition, and come in their original presentation box which features the name of the shop that sold them in Orleans.
The box is in excellent condition with only very minor losses, it features a lovely lock system, mirroring a door knob!
The Hallmark is Minerve -1st title – 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.