Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Silver, Room 67, The Whiteley Galleries

Tea Caddy Spoon

1843-1844 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

The function of the caddy spoon was originally served, until the second half of the 18th century, by the lid of the tea caddy itself. Around 1760, however, the shape of the tea caddy changed, becoming flatter and more box-like, and a separate implement for measuring the tea was needed. The form of a shell was popular from the start, perhaps because sea shells were packed with the tea for sampling by merchants. A fluted design also helped to strengthen the thin silver that was most often used. Some caddy spoons were modelled after cutlery patterns and serving ladles. Pierced caddy spoons replaced the ‘mote spoon’ for removing floating tea leaves.


Object details
Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Silver
Brief description
Silver, maker's mark JW for Joseph Willmore (?); England, Birmingham 1843-44.
Physical description
In shape of bird where bowl is body feathers and handle is neck and head.
Dimensions
  • Height: 2.00cm
  • Length: 7.50cm
  • Width: 3.90cm
Marks and inscriptions
In bowl: maker JW for Joseph Willmore (?), sterling, date, duty,
Credit line
Gask Gift
Object history
Acquisition RF: 37 / 2516

Gift - Mr Mrs Norman Gask

66, High Street, Amersham, Bucks

Image emailed to British Heritage Magazine, 12/11/99
Summary
The function of the caddy spoon was originally served, until the second half of the 18th century, by the lid of the tea caddy itself. Around 1760, however, the shape of the tea caddy changed, becoming flatter and more box-like, and a separate implement for measuring the tea was needed. The form of a shell was popular from the start, perhaps because sea shells were packed with the tea for sampling by merchants. A fluted design also helped to strengthen the thin silver that was most often used. Some caddy spoons were modelled after cutlery patterns and serving ladles. Pierced caddy spoons replaced the ‘mote spoon’ for removing floating tea leaves.
Collection
Accession number
M.114-1937

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Record createdMarch 3, 2004
Record URL
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