Pick of the week

Country Life Every Week - - Art Market -

For the sev­enth suc­ces­sive year, the May­fair An­tiques & Fine Arts Fair opens the cap­i­tal’s mar­ket cal­en­dar at the Lon­don Mar­riott Ho­tel in Grosvenor Square, W1. It is one of In­grid Nilsen’s well­re­garded fairs and, this year, it will run from Jan­uary 10 to 13. With about 40 ex­hibitors, the event has proved pop­u­lar with an in­ter­na­tional as well as a lo­cal au­di­ence.

Twelfth Night will then be past, but that’s no rea­son to es­chew was­sail­ing for an­other 12 months. Win­ter is best en­dured with a good bowl of punch and a good punch de­serves a good bowl. It would be hard to find a bet­ter one than that of­fered by the vet­eran sil­ver spe­cial­ist Mary Cooke, a clas­si­cal Adam-style bowl mea­sur­ing 111∕2in from han­dle to han­dle and weigh­ing 73oz.

By Wil­liam Pitts of Lon­don, it’s en­graved with the arms of the 3rd Duke of Mon­trose (1755–1836) and marked for 1790, the year he suc­ceeded to his ti­tles. The ram’s-head masks hold­ing the loop han­dles are ‘some of the most finely de­tailed’ that the dealer has ever seen.

The Duke held sev­eral im­por­tant min­istries dur­ing his po­lit­i­cal ca­reer, end­ing as Lord Jus­tice Gen­eral for Scot­land, and he was an early pres­i­dent of the High­land So­ci­ety of Lon­don, which suc­cess­fully cam­paigned to end the post ’45 ban on High­land dress in 1782.

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