The unascribed maker’s mark, WB, a mullet below, has been recorded on several silver sugar casters, all with London hallmarks between 1682 and 1688 (for example, Sotheby’s, London, 8 June 1972, lot 82; Christie’s, London, 8 July 1987, lot 221). In fact, the maker WB, a mullet below, seems to have been one of the first English silversmiths to have produced sets of three casters.The impression of this mark in Jackson (1989, p. 141, line 5) was clearly drawn from a badly struck or indistinct example, whereas two or three of the nine struck on this snuffers stand and snuffers are very clear.
Dr. C.H. Lewis, who graduated from Queen’s University, Ontario and received his Specialist’s Certificate in Psychiatry from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, was eventually appointed consultant psychiatrist in the Mental Health Division of the Canadian Department of Health. His retirement coincided with the sale of his collection of mostly early 18th century English silver at Sotheby’s, London on 14 December 1967, lots 99 to 126. The present snuffers stand and snuffers (lot 123) were outstripped in price by only one lot (116): a set of four silver-gilt candlesticks, Thomas Folkingham, London, 1725 and circa which realized £5,500 (Partridge). These sticks have since reappeared twice at auction at Christie’s, London: first on 26 November 1980, lot 106 (£11,000) and second on 9 December 2010, lot 45 (£25,000).
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