This super quality armorial George II silver coffee pot was made in London in 1749 by Huguenot silversmith Peze Pilleau. It has a lovely large coat of arms to the front with a cast and fluted swan neck spout having a shell to the underside and another above the spout, a scrolled fruit wood handle with cast silver fittings and drop and scroll detailing, a stepped lid with an acorn finial atop, it has a slightly "tucked in" bottom and is fully and clearly hallmarked to the side and also to the lid rim with the makers mark and lion passant, a very nice coffee pot in excellent condition weighing 24.9 ounces or 772 grams.
The Marital Arms of Sandford and Bearsley
The armorial bearings as engraved upon this George II English Sterling Silver Coffee Pot by Peze Pilleau hallmarked London 1749 are those of the family of Sandford impaling Bearsley. These armorial bearings denote the marshalling of a marital coat showing on the dexter (the heraldic right on the left as you view the piece) the arms of the husband and on the sinister (the heraldic left on the right as you view it) the arms of the wife. They may be blazoned as follows:
(on the dexter) Argent three bars wavy azure (for Sandford)
(on the sinister) Argent a bear's head proper collared embattled counter embattled Or holding a bunch of grapes in its mouth between three torteaux a chief Gules (for Bearsley)
These armorial bearings undoubtedly commemorate the marriage of H.W. Sandford and Margaret Bearsley who were married by W.E. Page, the Chaplain of the British Factory at Oporto, Portugal on the 15th July 1769 in the presence of Margaret’s father, Francis Bearsley and William Bearsley. I believe the William who is mentioned here was her uncle. Francis was the grandson of Job Bearsley, an English merchant who founded the first British Port House in Portugal in 1692 which today still trades as Taylor’s Port. Authorities state that the Bearsleys held land in the Counties of Staffordshire and Warwickshire and that Job had at one time owned the Ram Inn, Smithfield in the City of London. Margaret was baptised at Oporto on the 18th April 1749. If we are correct in our presumption Margaret’s mother must have been Jane Mejandie who married Francis at Oporto on the 10th April 1741.
Margaret’s great grandfather, Job Bearsley was granted arms by the Kings of Arms at the College of Arms in the City of London in 1730, although one unofficial authority omits the collar around the bear’s neck in the arms as engraved upon this particular piece. So saying, there is no doubt that the collar should be shown as there is an example of the Bearsley arms on a memorial dedicated to a Miss Margaret Bearsley (died in 1802), daughter of William Bearsley in the Church of St Mary Aldermary in the City of London showing the use of the collar about the bear’s neck. Little is known about Margaret’s husband, H.W. Sandford. Again, it may be presumed that he was a member of British community that was involved in the trading of Port from Oporto.