Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2014
Porringer (part of The Grand Service)
A silver-gilt porringer and cover with a coiled serpent ring handle. The cover is engraved with the four Evangelists, each in an oval reserve, surrounded by the four Elements, on a matted ground. The porringer has two flat lateral coiled serpent handles and a ring foot, and is engraved with two oval reserves telling the story of Jacob and Esau. The frieze is engraved with putti.
The shape of this porringer is unusual for Dutch silver of this date, particularly the flattened handles. The engravings are of very high quality. Although not all the sources of the engravings have been traced a number relate to works by Abraham van der Hecken and others to prints by Philips Galle after Maarten van Heemskerk.
The work is engraved on the base with the name Anna Michiels van Vaerlaer (1583/4 - 1644) who came from a prominent Mennonite family in Amsterdam.