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Communion cup

Communion cup

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    1664-1665 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Gray, John (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silver-gilt; raised, engraved

  • Credit Line:

    Lent by the Rector and Churchwardens of St Mary-le-Bow and United Parishes (from St Augustine and St Faith's, Old Change)

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

A Communion cup and paten lid presented to the parish church of St Faith under St Paul's Cathedral in 1664-5. The set included a flagon for the consecrated wine with which the Communion cup was filled. Both the flagon and the cup and paten bear the inscription ' The gift of M.M. to ye Parish Church of St Faiths under St Pauls for ye Sole use of ye Sacrament' and were given by the same donor, presumably a member of the parish community. The sacred monogram IHS is a later addition about 1820.

Physical description

A silver-gilt communion cup with a cylindrical bowl on cylindrical stem and domed base. Stamped with full set of London hallmarks, engraved with sacred monogram 'IHS' in rayed surround, and inscribed with details of donor and church, English (London), 1664-65

Place of Origin

London (made)


1664-1665 (made)


Gray, John (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Silver-gilt; raised, engraved

Marks and inscriptions

Weight engraved beneath base of cup: '28 oz 13 dwt'
Engraving probably an early 19th-century addition

Engraved around underside of base of cup: 'The gift of M M to ye Parish church of St faiths under Pauls for ye Sole use of ye Sacrament'

Rim of cup stamped with four marks, from left to right, the maker's mark, probably for John Gray (initials IG, mullet below, in heart-shaped shield); leopard's head crowned, for the London assay office; lion passant, the sterling mark; the date letter for the London assay year 1664-65. Lion passant also stamped on underside of foot.


Height: 24.8 cm, Diameter: 13 cm of cup, Diameter: 14.9 cm of base, Weight: 895 g

Object history note

St Faith under St Paul's in Castle Baynard Ward was an unusual parish within the City of London. It had been physically removed in 1256 to allow for the eastern expansion of the Old St Paul's Cathedral.St Augustine, Watling Street was an Anglican church which stood just to the east of St Paul's. The church stood on the north side of Watling Street, at the corner with Old Change. After the fire the parish was united with that of St Faith's, whose congregation had previously worshipped in the crypt of St Paul's Cathedral. St Augustine with St Faith, Old Change. This church is situated behind number 35, St. Paul's churchyard, and at the corner of Watling Street.

Descriptive line

A silver-gilt communion cup with everted cylindrical bowl on cylindrical stem and domed base, English (London), 1664-65

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Freshfield, Edwin. The Communion Plate of the Parish Churches in the County of London. London and Middlesex Archaeology Group [printed by Rixon & Arnold], 1894, p. 17.; Victoria and Albert Museum Department of Metalwork Handlist of the Church Plate Study Collections and the Collection of Monumental Brasses in Rooms 83 and 84 Part I Room 84 Church Plate of the British Isles and English Monumental Brasses p.20
For more information on silversmith George Dixon, see David Mitchell, Silversmiths in Elizabethan and Stuart London, 2017, pp.367-68

Labels and date

COMMUNION CUP AND PATEN LID Silver-gilt LONDON Hall-mark for 1664-5. Maker's mark IG, a cinqfoil below. The foot of the paten and the base of the cup are engraved 'The gift of M.M. to ye Parish Church of St. Faiths under Pauls for ye Sole use of ye Sacrament'. A form employing the plain surfaces and general shapes of pre-Civil War church plate. The sacred monogram within rays was added about 1810.
Lent by the Rector and Churchwardens of St Mary-le-Bow and United Parishes (from St Augustine and St Faith's, Old Change,) London, Nos.9 and 10 [1980]


Silver; Gold


Gilding; Raising


Christianity; Metalwork; Religion; Silver


Metalwork Collection

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