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Chalice and paten

Chalice and paten

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1822-1823 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    King, George (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silver

  • Credit Line:

    Lent by St. Stephen's Hospital, Fulham

  • Museum number:

    LOAN:ST STEPHENS HOS.1A

  • Gallery location:

    Sacred Silver & Stained Glass, Room 83, The Whiteley Galleries, case 2C []

This small chalice and paten were used to serve consecrated wine and bread to the sick, during services of Holy Communion at a London charity school. The school had originally been a poorhouse and the chalice is inscribed ‘Covent Garden Poor House Feby 1823’, along with ‘IHS’ (a contraction of the name Jesus Christ in Greek). The accounts of the Overseers of the Poor record that the chalice and paten cost eight guineas.

Physical description

A goblet-shaped chalice on a slender stem with central rib and circular foot with inscription both the chalice and the paten are engraved with the sacred monogram IHS within a rayed glory.

Place of Origin

London (made)

Date

1822-1823 (made)

Artist/maker

King, George (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Silver

Marks and inscriptions

Both chalice and paten are engraved with the sacred monogram IHS within a rayed glory; the chalice is inscribed ''Covent Garden Poor House Feby 1823'.

London hallmarks for 1822-23

Mark of George King

Dimensions

Height: 13.5 cm of cup, Width: 7.5 cm of cup, Width: 6.9 cm of base

Object history note

The parish of Covent Garden supported a workhouse and a poor house. The accounts of the Overseers of the Poor record the payment of £8 8 shillings to Mr Hill for Silver Chalice for Sacrament on 21st February 1823. The following year the Vestry Minutes of St. Paul's Covent Garden record the purchase of a further larger silver chalice from the same supplier Mr. Hill for £12 12 shillings for the use of the parishioners.

Historical significance: The Poor House of the Parish of St. Paul's Covent Garden was situated in Cleveland Street to the west of Tottenham Court Road ( a building which is apparently now incorporated into the Out-Patients Department for the Middlesex Hospital. By 1778 this had become a Charity School. Parish officers saw that communion was celebrated and prayer books distributed to those who were dependent on the parish.

Historical context note

Gifts to Charity
Public benefactions were seen as evidence of the donor’s faith. In 18th-century London, leading citizens founded institutions to assist the poor, sick and isolated. Prevention was better than a cure, and in 1758 the Asylum for Female Orphans was founded to prevent prostitution. In the same year the Magdalen Hospital was established to reform repentant prostitutes.

Hospital governors recognised the importance of religion in educating and nurturing those for whom they cared. Regular communion was considered part of the healing process. In poorhouses parish officers saw that communion was celebrated and prayer books distributed.

In the Poor Houses Parish officers saw that communion was celebrated and prayer books distributed .In December 1822 the Overseers of the Poor paid £2.2s for twenty-four Prayer Books. In January 1823 they paid £3 11 shillings to the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge for Bibles.

Descriptive line

A silver chalice and paten engraved with the sacred monogram and 'Covent Garden Poor House Feby 1823', made by George King, London, 1822-3

Labels and date

Poorhouse Chalice and Paten
This small chalice and paten were used to serve consecrated wine and bread to the sick, during services of Holy Communion at a London charity school. The school had originally been a poorhouse and the chalice is inscribed ‘Covent Garden Poor House Feby 1823’, along with ‘IHS’ (a contraction of the name Jesus Christ in Greek). The accounts of the Overseers of the Poor record that the chalice and paten cost eight guineas.

London, England, 1822–3; by George King (active 1808–23)
Silver
Lent by St Stephen’s Hospital, Fulham [2005]

Materials

Silver

Techniques

Raised; Engraved

Categories

Religion; Christianity; Metalwork

Collection

Metalwork Collection

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