An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765
Lot 139
An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765
Sold for £ 20,000 (US$ 26,834) inc. premium

Lot Details
An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765 An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765 An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765
An exceptional Beilby enamelled tumbler for the Order of the Thistle, circa 1765
Of slightly-tapering bucket shape, painted in colours or in polychrome with a thistle surmounted by a royal crown, inscribed in opaque white below 'Nemo me Impune Lacessit.', the reverse painted in opaque-white with a spray of four bell-flowers growing from a leafy stalk in front of a separate flowering twig, two butterflies in flight on either side, 10.3cm high

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    Bonhams sale 30 November 2011, lot 22

    This beaker is one of only three recorded examples of Beilby-enamelled vessels associated with the Order of the Thistle. A matching ale glass from the collection of A.C. Hubbard, Jr. was sold by Bonhams also on 30 November 2011, lot 150. The third example, also an ale glass is in the Lorimer Collection in Philadelphia Museum of Art, illustrated by Simon Cottle 'The Other Beilbys: British enamelled glass of The 18th Century', Apollo, 1986, p.322, pl.IX.

    A tumbler of similar size and form in the City of Bristol Museum is painted with the same floral subject in white enamel with an inscription to the Coal Trade. This is illustrated by James Rush, A Beilby Odyssey (1986), p.97, pl.59

    The Order of the Thistle is a Scottish order that was established in the late 17th century and revived by Queen Anne. Knights of the Order are appointed by the monarch. From 1763 to 1768 only a small number of Knights were created, each of whom may have commissioned the Beilbys to create this small service. Charles Schaw Cathcart, 9th Lord Cathcart (1721–1776) entered in 1763; William Douglas, 3rd Earl of March (1725–1810) entered 1763; John Campbell, 4th Duke of Argyll (1693–1770) entered 1765; Henry Scott, 3rd Duke of Buccleuch (1746–1812), entered 1767; John Murray, 3rd Duke of Atholl (1729–1774) entered 1767; Frederick Howard, 5th Earl of Carlisle (1748–1825), entered 1767; William Henry Kerr, 4th Marquess of Lothian (1710–1775), entered 1768; David Murray, 7th Viscount Stormont (1727–1796), entered 1768; John Ker, 3rd Duke of Roxburghe (1740–1804), entered 1768.

    The Duke of Buccleugh was probably a customer of the Beilby workshop as an unusually large pair of decanters decorated in opaque-white enamel can be found today at Bowhill, the family seat. Also John Murray, the 3rd Duke of Atholl may have ordered a service of enamelled glass painted with coronets from a Newcastle glasshouse in 1764 (see Cottle, op. cit., p.323).
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