Designer / Maker
Designed and manufactured by Alfred James
Height: 14 cm
English (probably Cirencester), circa 1905-10
‘A J’ under base
Presumably Alfred James; […]; Peter Cameron, 2021
This heavy-gauge silver chalice expresses the Arts & Crafts Movement’s debt to the Gothic Revival. The form is directly based on mediaeval prototypes, but the light hammer-marks on the unadorned bowl, together with the plain stem and base, are in keeping with the spirit of Arts & Crafts manufacture.
Alfred James lived at Edgeworth Manor, Cirencester. He is thought to have been an accomplished and presumably comfortably-off amateur, who made things mainly for his own pleasure. Thus, this chalice has no more than his mark and does not bear an assay mark.
Jones made a chalice for his local church, St Mary the Virgin; he is also thought to have made some of his own furniture, as well as being a patron of Peter Waals.
For James’ mark, see John Culme, The Directory of Gold & Silversmiths … 1838-1914, II, Woodbridge, 1987, p. 12, 781-783. Mark registered 4 August 1905.
Acknowledgment: Peter Nellist