Not currently on display at the V&A

Bottle Ticket

ca. 1725-1750 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

The history of bottle tickets provides a fascinating insight into English eating, drinking and personal habits. Contemporary gazettes begin to refer to ‘labels for bottles’ in the 1770s but it was not until the 1790s that they were established as wine or decanter labels. Their function was to identify the contents of a bottle or decanter, which might alternatively contain spirits, sauces, toilet waters or cordials. These tickets also illustrate in miniature, the skills of the silversmith over the last two hundred years. While the variety of styles and materials were enormous, silver bottle tickets tended to reflect fashionable designs in metalware generally. Makers were quick to adapt the many technical advances of the 18th and 19th centuries to the manufacture of bottle tickets.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Silver, engraved and pierced
Brief Description
Silver, no marks, England, ca.1725-50
Physical Description
Bottle ticket with the word MADEIRA (pierced lettering), one of a set of three. Silver, shaped oblong with scalloped corners, engraved scrollwork and chain attached.
Dimensions
  • Height: 1.125in
  • Length: 1.625in
Marks and Inscriptions
  • No marks
  • MADEIRA
Credit line
P. J. Cropper Bequest
Summary
The history of bottle tickets provides a fascinating insight into English eating, drinking and personal habits. Contemporary gazettes begin to refer to ‘labels for bottles’ in the 1770s but it was not until the 1790s that they were established as wine or decanter labels. Their function was to identify the contents of a bottle or decanter, which might alternatively contain spirits, sauces, toilet waters or cordials. These tickets also illustrate in miniature, the skills of the silversmith over the last two hundred years. While the variety of styles and materials were enormous, silver bottle tickets tended to reflect fashionable designs in metalware generally. Makers were quick to adapt the many technical advances of the 18th and 19th centuries to the manufacture of bottle tickets.
Associated Objects
Collection
Accession Number
M.508-1944

About this object record

Explore the Collections contains over a million catalogue records, and over half a million images. It is a working database that includes information compiled over the life of the museum. Some of our records may contain offensive and discriminatory language, or reflect outdated ideas, practice and analysis. We are committed to addressing these issues, and to review and update our records accordingly.

You can write to us to suggest improvements to the record.

Suggest Feedback

record createdDecember 23, 2004
Record URL