Punch Bowl

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Tiffany and Company
American, founded 1837
New York, New York

Punch Bowl, 1873

41.9 x diam. 67.3 cm (16 1/2 x diam. 26 1/2 in.)
Inscriptions, marked under each base: "TIFFANY AND CO." (in a convex rectangle)/"2379"/ "Quality 925.1000" (in rectangle)/ gothic "M" (in oval)/"5200"/ "UNION SQUARE" (in convex rectangle); marked on underside of one foot: "No. 1"; inscribed: "The United States of America/Viscount d'Itajubá/His Majesty, the Emperor of Brazil/Article 1 of the Treaty Between the United States and Her Britannic Majesty/ Concluded at Washington May 8, 1871 as a Mark of Their Appreciation of the/ Dignity, Learning, Ability and Impartiality with Which He Discharged His Arduous Duties at/ Geneva"
Gift of the Antiquarian Society through the Mr. and Mrs. William Y. Hutchinson Fund, 1985.221c

Executed in the “neo-grec” style, this suite of silver was commissioned by the United States government and presented to Viscount d’Itajubá of Brazil in gratitude for his role in arbitrating grievances between the United States and Great Britain after the American Civil War. It was the first of three identical suites made by Tiffany and Company, as indicated on each piece by the “No. 1” stamped on the underside. Figures and symbols decorating these objects represent ancient Greek themes. The handles on the punch bowl portray Dionysus, the god of wine, and the wine coolers depict facemasks of Silenus, a woodland god and Dionysus’s constant companion. The full-figure, chased plaques on the wine coolers represent Agriculture and Commerce and were meant to symbolize the continued stability and prosperity of the United States after the Civil War.

— Permanent collection label

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

Dallas Museum of Art, "A Century of Splendor: Silver in America, 1840-1940," November 6, 1994-January 29, 1995; traveled to Pittsburgh, Carnegie Museum of Art, March 12-May 21, 1995; Milwaukee Art Museum, June 13-August 13, 1995; Delaware, Winterthur Museum, September 9, 1995-January 7, 1996.

Publication History

Judith A. Barter et al, American Arts at The Art Institute of Chicago: From Colonial Times to World War I (Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1998), pp. 220-223, no. 103.

John Loring, "Magnificent Tiffany Silver," (Abrams,2001), p. 124-5.