Christofle French Sterling Silver Two-Handled Covered Dish Bowl / Tureen in Art Deco Style
Christofle, French, 0.950 (higher purity than sterling) silver two-handled covered dish bowl or tureen in Art Deco style, with an elegant, geometric design, from the early 20th century, measuring 14 3/4'' from handle to handle by 9 3/4'' in depth by 5 1/4'' in height with the lid (2 7/8'' without the lid), weighing 52.2 troy ounces, and bearing hallmarks as shown.
The Christofle company was founded in 1830 by Charles Christofle. Born into a family of Parisian industrialists specializing in precious metal work, Charles Christofle was 15 years old when he began an apprenticeship with his brother-in-law Hugues Calmette, a jewelry manufacturer. In 1830, he took over the family business. In 1842, he bought from the patents for gilding and silvering by electrolysis; this technique gave birth to silver plating in France. In 1844, he decided to create and manufacture his own models.
Christofle supplied King Louis-Philippe, who in 1846 ordered a dinner service for the Château d'Eu. The company became famous after Emperor Napoleon III ordered a 4,000-piece service, including the surtouts, in 1851. The centerpiece of the goldsmith's surtouts was recovered from the ruins of the Tuileries Palace and is now in the Museum of Decorative Arts. Its titles of "Goldsmith of the King" and "Supplier of the Emperor" will allow the house to become famous and to be solicited by foreign sovereigns such as the Emperor Maximilian of Mexico, the Tsar of Russia, the German Kaiser, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, the Sultan Abdülaziz of the Ottoman Empire.
When Charles Christofle died, his son Paul (1838-1907) and his nephew Henri Bouilhet (1830-1910) succeeded him and continued to develop the company. Thanks to the development of new techniques and the opening of new factories, Christofle became one of the major goldsmiths and silversmiths of the century. Its collections cover not only tableware and decoration, but also objets d'art, decorative statuary, prizes for races or agricultural competitions, and monumental decor for gilding, for example the decorations on the roof of the Opera Garnier in Paris. Its work is present in many major museum collections, such as the Louvre Museum and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Please feel free to ask us any questions, and please see our other listings. We hand polish all items before shipping them out, but if there is interest for a professional polishing and/or engraving removal, we can take care of that for an additional charge and with delayed shipping.