The Serque Collection
June 5, 04:47 PM GMT
300,000 - 400,000 USD
A PAIR OF GERMAN PARCEL-GILT SILVER TORAH FINIALS, JURGEN RICHELS, HAMBURG, CIRCA 1688-9
of five sided baluster form, formed of cast openwork sections, the center with lobate apertures, the top with a stylized crown rising from a gilt coronet, with grounds of different matting and fine lozengework, gilt bud finial, hung with bells, some replaced
marked on staves with maker’s mark and city mark incorporating letter ?A for 1688-89 (Schliemann, no. 43 II)
height 17 in.
Jurgen Richels, son of Hinrich, trained under Steffen Sommering and Harmen Luders 1653-59, became master in 1664 and Alderman in 1681, and died in 1710. A prolific maker, he specialized in chased works, tankards, beakers and religious works, including reliquary busts in the Treasury at Paderborn. A large number of his works are in the Armory Moscow, listed in Scheffler, Goldschmiede Niedersachsens, p.487-8.
A pair of finials of this model by Richels, but with 19th century gilding and a crown motif between the top tier and the finial, was in the collection of Philip Salomons (see note to lot 3 in this sale). They were acquired after his death by Reuben D. Sassoon, shown in the 1887 Anglo-Jewish Historical Exhibition at the Royal Albert Hall (no. 2037), and sold from the Sassoon Family at Sotheby's, Tel Aviv, Friday, April 9, 1999, lot 15.
The first of this form is considered to be by Jan van den Velde, Amsterdam, circa 1650, formerly in the Gross Collection, Israel.
The design of these finials, which show a mixture of baroque architectural forms and the auricular fashionable in the mid 17th century, would be followed by makers such as Pieter van Hoven in Amsterdam. Compare the pair of 1705 in the Jewish Museum New York, see Rafi Grafman, Crowning Glory: Silver Torah Ornament of the Jewish Museum, New York, no 383 p 235. Another pair by van Hoven, also 1705, are in the Jewish Historical Museum, Amsterdam, inv.no.B0102, see Gifts from the Heart no.12 pp. 150-151.
A closer pair are in the Jewish Museum, London, JM102, unmarked but described as Netherlands (probably Amsterdam,) c.1695, see Treasures of Jewish Heritage, The Jewish Museum, London, p.77. There were strong connections between the Sephardic communities in Hamburg, Amsterdam and London.