The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Salver
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • Venice, Italy
  • late 16th century - 18th century
  • Colourless glass with very slight straw tinge throughout, except for a pale-blue glass chain; mould-blown, applied and tooled features.
  • Height: 10.4 cm
    Diameter: 30.8 cm
  • C549
  • Sixteenth Century Gallery
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • Salvers such as this were used for the presentation of drinks and sweetmeats. They were proffered either independently or incorporated into a pyramidal serving piece known in Italian as an 'alzata'.
    Salvers of this type, with their characteristic blue chain framed by colourless milled trails, are not uncommon. Many are enhanced with a band of diamond-point engraved foliate decoration.The salvers are often attributed to Venice.This one is an exceptionally refined and accomplished example.The skill required to produce its localised, even, upturned rim adjacent to an otherwise flat surface in thinly blown soda-lime glass is masterly. This salver is also unusually ornate in incorporating a spirally ribbed knop between mereses. Salvers of this type are variously dated between the second half of the sixteenth and early eighteenth centuries, but most frequently to the seventeenth century. The broad date span given for this example takes into account the fact that the ribbed knop and pedestal foot occur on sixteenth-century Venetian glasses but also that the applied blue chain between colourless milled trails is seen, too, on the salver presented to Frederik IV of Denmark when he visited Venice in 1708-9. C549 is attributed to Venice owing to its fine craftsmanship, typically Venetian features and similarity to the example given to Frederik IV in Venice.