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5176 A Good Georgian Wine Funnel

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This is a good example of an early 19th century wine funnel.  Typically it comes in two parts with the bowl resting inside the body enabling two functions. First, the bowl has a strainer to remove errant pieces of cork in the decanting process and second, the removal of the bowl allows the both halves of the funnel to be fully cleaned after use.

Funnels of the early 19th century are arguably the most satisfactory as they present an elegant outline and are very fit for purpose.  They are also usually much better made than earlier examples and weigh considerably more.

This funnel is in excellent overall condition and the spout has not been damaged and shortened (as so many have).  It is engraved with a crest, motto and monogram.

The crest is that of the Molesworth family, a fact confirmed by the motto - "Sic fides teneo" (Thus I keep my faith) and the fact that the funnel is also initialled 'JM' puts the original owner as John Molesworth.  There was a John Molesworth who was a renowed clergyman, but in 1803 he was only 14 years old.  This suggests that the funnel was either bought a few years after it was made, or that it was originally bought by John Molesworth's father, also John.

The hallmarks on the funnel are very clear; it was made in London in 1803.  The maker is less clear.  The maker's initials are AE or AF but the standard reference work for looking up London makers from 1697 - 1837 (Grimwade) lists no makers with those initials working in 1803.

Date: 1803

Dimensions: 6", 15.2 cm long

Weight: 4 oz. 7 dwt. 135 grams

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