A very rare set of four silver strawberry or salad/serving dishes London 1835 by Robert Gerrard II. Each scalloped circular body with wavy rim, the center engraved with an armorial for Viscount Ashbrook. (see photo), with the motto 'Mens conscia recti' which translates as 'A mind conscious of rectitude'.
Hallmarked for London, 1835 by the royal silversmith Robert Garrard II. There is a retailers mark of 'MAKEPEACE LONDON' to each dish.
These dishes are in wonderful condition with minor scratching to the dish through use. The hallmarks are clear, with only the makers mark on each being partially rubbed.
It is highly unusual to find a set of four strawberry dishes sill together, as sets became separated over the years, making these highly important and collectable. They were made Robert Gerrard II - one of the renowned silversmiths of the time whose work was so fine that he went on to become the royal silversmith. The Victoria & Albert museum have on display, several pieces of his work from the same period with the 'Makepeace' retailer mark.
Strawberry dishes originally came into use towards the end of the 17th Century and were fashionably used for serving strawberries and salads. Their use evolved with the tastes and they became used as dessert dishes. These particular dishes were very probably commissioned as standout serving dishes, and would have been used on special occasions.
The armorial is for Viscount Ashbrook. The dishes were commissioned by Lord Henry Jeffrey Flower (1776-1847). Lord Henry Jeffrey Flower was the 4th Viscount Ashbrook and Baron of castle Durrow, in the county of Kilkenny, in the peerage of Ireland. During the period these wonderful dishes were commissioned, Lord Flower was a Captain in the 58th Regiment of Foot; a Lord of the Bedchamber to King William IV between 1832-37. They stayed in the family by descent until 2014.