This magnificent French silver ewer and basin were made for the British military hero John Churchill, 1st Duke of Marlborough, in Lille in 1711/12 during the allied occupation.

The fine engraving incorporates appropriate military emblems - a trophy of arms with weapons, drums and trumpets, their banners bearing the cipher AR for Queen Anne. During Marlborough's lifetime, the ewer and basin formed part of the buffet display in the dining rooms at Blenheim Palace and Marlborough House, London. They are now displayed in the Whiteley Silver Galleries at the V&A following the Art Fund's successful campaign to save them for the nation.


Private collection. On loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 2002 - 2006.

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