A letter opener/paper cutter (English, c. 1870) composed of ivory and silver. The handle of the paper cutter is made from a tusk and kept in its original shape while the blade is carved smoothly with a rounded tip. Where the handle and blade meet are decorated and joined by silver, the silver is stamped with a maker’s mark of “H.W.D.”, indicating that it may have been made by the English silversmith Henry William Dee. Next to this are the English hallmarks of a lion passant, the London city mark of a jaguar, a “P” date mark (indicating a c. 1870 manufacture date), and a duty mark of a woman in profile. The handle is decorated with an applied silver shield incised with the King family crest of a rampant lion within a crown. Under the crown is a ribbon with the Latin motto “FAC ET SPERA” which translates to “Do and Hope”.
19" x 2"
Gift of Mrs. Gwendolen E. Rives, 1972.
For more information about this item, please contact its owning institution.