Bottle ticket

1784-1785 (made)

Thomas Phipps, James Phipps II and Edward Robinson II

Height: 1.75 in, Length: 1.75 in

M.436-1944 MET

Silver, London hallmarks for 1784-1785, mark of Phipps and Robinson

Bottle ticket with the word PORT. Silver, oval with engraved border of dog tooth design; above is a small oval cartouche raised on two scroll arms engraved with a crest for Cavendish (a snake knotted), chain attached.

Bottle tickets identified the contents of a bottle or decanter, which might alternatively contain spirits, sauces, toilet waters or cordials. This silver ticket is one of a set engraved with the crest of Cavendish (a knotted snake). It identifies the contents as port, a fortified wine from the Oporto region of Portugal. Contemporary gazettes begin to refer to ‘labels for bottles’ in the 1770s but it was not until the 1790s that they were established as wine or decanter labels. These tickets also illustrate in miniature the skills of the silversmith over the last two hundred years. While the variety of styles and materials was enormous, silver bottle tickets tended to reflect the designs and technical advances in metalware generally.

P. J. Cropper Bequest

Location: In Storage

View this object on the V&A website