STRIKING, IMAGINATIVE DOUBLE-ENTWINED SEA SERPENT OR DOLPHIN FLASK BY BARTRAM & CO.

$550.00 SOLD

Quantity Available: None

Item Code: 490-6903

One of the most imaginative figural powder flasks is this one, made and marked on the brass top by Bartram & Co., founded in 1851 by William Bartram, and in business until 1892. The spout is adjustable. The thumbpiece and spring are in place. The sea creatures have short fins at the top, spiral together for the body, uniting at the bottom in a single head with strong brows and crest. Riling called it a dolphin, but the scales on the body hint otherwise, and we think quite readily of other imaginative sea creatures used to decorate the fitting of naval officers’ swords, etc.

The condition is very good, with the body free of dents except on the very bottom where we see a slight opening to the seam. The body has a pleasant gold tone. The brass cap is medium bright with some small age spotting. The spring has some faint blue.

This is one of those great figural flasks causing the viewer to wonder “why,” and the flask maker and artist to answer, “why not?”     [sr][ph:m/L]

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