University Museums

Title: Tray
Name: Tray
Date: c. 1740-1741
Medium: Silver
Country/Culture: English
Dimensions: 1 1/2 × 13 1/4 in. diameter(3.8 × 33.7 cm)
Marks: 4 stamps: Bg, animal, crown, E and numbers 35=2 This represents a Leopard's head, crowned; lion passant; date letter "e" and maker's mark.
Classification: Decorative Arts, Metal
Credit Line: Gift of Ann and Henry Brunnier. In the Ann and Henry Brunnier Collection, Brunnier Art Museum, University Museums, Iowa State University, Ames, Iowa.
Object Number: 4.8.1
More Information
Benjamin Godfrey was a practicing silversmith from 1732 until his death on June 29, 1741. On October 3, 1732, he entered his first mark at Hand Ring and Crown Norris Street, Haymarket in London. He was married to Elizabeth Buteaux Godfrey, a preeminent woman silversmith of the eighteenth century. Benjamin and Elizabeth were married in 1734, and together the couple maintained a successful silversmithing business. Upon the death of Benjamin, sadly, Elizabeth became twice widowed by silversmiths.

Rococo influence in England occurred around 1740, greatly influencing designs in the decorative arts. This tray exhibits hints of rococo decorative motifs, featuring subdued scrollwork borders, asymmetrical floral engraving and shell ornamentation.