Duty Dodger Silver Marrow Scoop, c.1775 Chawner

Duty dodger silver marrow scoop by Thomas William Chawner
Duty dodger silver marrow scoop by Thomas William Chawner DSCN4085 v2 DSCN4088 v2 DSCN4089 v2 DSCN4091 v2


Marrow Scoop - Duty Dodger ; Feather-Edge - London circa 1770 by Thomas & William Chawner - 21.1cm long; 47g - RL/4550

Double-ended silver marrow scoops were used for taking out the creamy marrow delicacy from beef bones and this is a particularly fine example with lots of points of interest.

The shaft between the two differently sized scoops is attractively decorated to the top with feather edging, whilst the reverse side is struck four times with the TC over WC makers mark for Thomas & William Chawner. The repetitive striking of the same mark is indicative of a “duty dodger” – i.e. this scoop was not sent to Goldsmiths Hall for assaying and hallmarking, thus saving on the fees, but instead marked in-house to simulate true hallmarks and avoid Hall fees and tax (duty). The marks are unusually clear and appear to have a single clear striking of the maker’s mark and the other deeply stamped with a blank punch and then lightly hit with the maker’s mark – the majority of duty dodgers have obscure marks to try to hide this unscrupulous practice.

Thomas & William Chawner were important 18th century specialist spoonmakers with Thomas apprenticed to Ebenezer Coker and in turn being master to future important spoonmakers: Wm Fearn, Wm Sumner, George Smith III and Thomas Northcote.

Made during the reign of King George III, this fine looking antique marrow scoop can be accurately dated to circa 1775 due to the working period of the makers and the feather edging which was the height of fashion during the 1770’s.

A further bonus is the all-round excellent condition and the finely engraved crest featuring a griffin to the reverse of the largest scoop.