Rare and magnificent antique French PUIFORCAT "Fer de Lance " pattern sterling silver 109pc flatware set, a 6pc table setting for EIGHTEEN with one large dessert or ice cream serving piece and kept in the original two-layer black leatherette storage chest! All flatware with a highly attractive and rare Gothic style pattern with what appears to be either "CG" or "GC" monograms. Also rare to find such a comprehensive assortment, complete for eighteen. So often these old sets are broken up through generations and we see them come to auction only in small piece lots - a shame, and yet it's the result of division of estates through the years and so it happens. But here you see a stunning and complete PUIFORCAT 109 piece service and all in a fine old chest, too. The PUIFORCAT name, as I'm sure I need not say, has a long and lauded history in Paris (and throughout the world for that matter). Maker to royalty, known for only the finest of the fine. Now owned by Hermes, Puiforcat continues to offer luxurious silver to this day. This set includes the following:
18 table service spoons, 8.5" in length, 87 grams each
18 table service forks, 8.5" in length, 84 grams each
18 entremet or luncheon spoons, 7" in length, 44 grams each
18 entremet or luncheon forks, 6 7/8" in length, 43 grams each
18 teaspoons, 4 3/4" in length, 20 grams each
One 10 1/8" vermeil bladed dessert serving piece, 124 grams
18 vermeil bowled ice cream or dessert spoons, 5 5/8" in length, 23 grams each
**TOTAL weight of silver is 5545 grams or 178 troy ounces
Just add knives to complete your opulent table setting! A note about knives: A traditional wedding gift, these magnificent French sterling silver flatware sets were almost always packaged without knives. Why is this? Another French tradition has to do with the gift of knives or a knife as a symbol of the cutting or ending of a relationship. And no where on earth is tradition more important, perhaps, than to the French culture. So, in light of the symbolism of the gift, knives were not part of a wedding gift, not packaged or even usually made with the matching pattern of the forks, spoons in a set, and are something added later and as compliments to the table's sterling silver choice. And ever the center influence in fashion, this also opportuned the happy result of knives made in coordinating and complimenting fashion with handles of rich elegant mother of pearl, fine ivory, blond natural horn, or exotic hardwoods like ebony (a French Empire 'must') walnut, rosewood. The result is that you can add sets of knives to compliment and define your table setting.\r\rMore about knives: Louis XIV, A rennaisance man if ever there were one, The Sun King - builder of Versailles, was also the man responsible for the design of the modern table knife. Prior to his time, knives used at table were similar to knives used to kill game, fight wars, and possibly kill Kings. There was a time when knives were even banned from table for such intrigues, and it was Louis XIV's table upon which the blunt and rounded tip knives for dining were introduced to the world at large. A side note: With the massive size of the dinner fork and spoon in French sterling, one need not look to the knife as a weapon - as one of my customers once suggested, and I paraphrase here here: These things are heavy enough to kill a guest if thrown. She is correct - they weigh in nearly double the large tablespoon of, say, the equivalent set made in America by Gorham or Whiting - "Lily", which tablespoon is more closely in line size and weight-wise with the entremet spoon in French flatware.
Excellent for age and type. The set is used, of course the pieces do show some signs of use but the fork tines are all well-pointed and the silver shows beautifully for your enjoyment at table. The chest is also in truly remarkable condition AND original to the set as evidenced by the matching monogram on the handle/cartouche. A fabulous set, large and beautiful. Pattern is rare! See pictures for all individual weights and measurements.
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