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Goldsmith’s Art

Cup with cover

Key data

dated 1844

Johann Jakob Handmann III after a design by Melchior Berri, Basle

Silver, cast, embossed, stamped, chased, parcel gilt

height 38 cm

Inv. 1981.112.


With the spread of banquets held by clubs and societies during the period of the Restoration a new market opened up for goldsmiths and the gold trade. The 'Gabentempel' (tower of prizes) at festivals of singers, gymnasts and marksmen needed to be supplied with trophies, objects of applied art which were increasingly supplied by the manufacturing industries. With this development came the division of design from production. This trophy presented by the officers' corps of the city of Basle for the Swiss shooting contest in Basle in 1844 was designed by the architect Melchior Berri (1801-1854). Like his contemporary Karl Friedrich Schinkel or the designer architects of today he was responsible not only for a number of important buildings and architectural designs but also for everyday objects, such as a letter box, tableware, or this neo Gothic cup with battle iconography typical of the period. The elaborate fabrication using the most diverse techniques was left to the goldsmith Johann Jakob Handmann III (1789-1868). The stamped openwork neo Gothic tracery overlaid on both bowl and lid is particularly remarkable.

Selection of similar objects


Basel Historical Museum
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