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be an unheard-of proceeding for a man to go to sea in spurs. I might even venture to say that no sea-captain would embark a man with a pair of spurs like those strapped on his heels, unless he had an assurance they were only to be used as a kind of stage properties, or in the figurative way that they were made use of in the time of the old border frays between England and Scotland, during that period. When any of the great filmilies found the meat in the larder getting scarce, the lady of the house sent up a pair of spurs for the last course to intimate that it was time for the gentlemen to put spurs to their horses, and to make a raid on England for a further supply.

NOTE.—Colonel Vigors, Vice-President, has kindly sent me some notes gathered from a book called “Epitome de las Historias Portuguesas" (printed at Brussels in 1677), which throw much light on the use of the prick-spur in Portugal. A plate in this book represents Henry, Count of Portugal, the date of whose death is given as 1112, as wearing a prick-spur on the right foot and no spur on the left foot, so that something may be said in favour of one man, one spur.

Don Sancho, King of Portugal, who died in 1212, is represented as wearing a pair of prick-spurs.

Don Dionis, who died in 1325, is represented as wearing rowelledspurs.

Don Fernando, who died in 1383, is represented as wearing prickspurs.

Don Juan, who died in 1439, is represented as wearing large eightpointed rowelled spurs.

Don Juan (the Second), who died in 1495, is represented as wearing regular Norman prick-spurs (usual type).

Don Manuel, who died in 1521, is represented wearing rowelled spurs.

If we can rely on these plates, the overlapping which I supposed may have occurred in Ireland existed to a marked extent in Portugal.



Ir is no less true than strange that, for many years previous to 1878, the 1 city of Cork had forgotten its ancient goldsmiths—men whose labours. had enriched it, and done it honour, and that not one amongst the many persons who possessed fine pieces of plate stamped with the initials of those who were, in every sense, masters of the goldsmith's art, knew the names of the makers. Fortunately in that year the O'Donovan tankard, marked with RG and two castles (in three stamps), was seen by Robert Day, m.R.I.A., F.S.A., who at once formed the opinion that it had been made in the latter half of the seventeenth century in the city of Cork. Going immediately to the late Richard Caulfield, LL.D., P.S.A. (who for many years before his death was the authority upon all matters touching the history of Cork), he put the query, “who was R G who made silver plate in this city about two hundred years ago ?”—the reply soon came, “Robert Goble, Master of the Goldsmiths' Guild in 1694.” Mr. Day thereupon began to collect fine specimens of old silver of local manufacture, and a few years sufficed to add to the thousands of beautiful and valuable things with which his antiquarian information and artistic acumen had already filled his house, a large number of magnificent pieces of old silver plate.

It is probable that useful and beautiful articles of gold and silver have been manufactured in the city of Cork for several hundred years, and it is certain that in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries there were goldsmiths in it, and that in the latter century were moulded some of those exquisite chalices and patens of local manufacture which still remain.

Cork appears to have never had a regularly appointed assay officer, and purchasers seem to have trusted—not in vain-to the honesty of its goldsmiths (who probably were ready, on occasion, to assay each other's plate). Under the Charter of James I., dated the 9th of March, 1608, to the town of Youghal, the Corporation was given power to subdivide itself into guilds, and the Mayor authority to appoint a clerk of assay; and Cork, by its Charter from Charles I., dated the 7th of April, 1631, was granted the same privileges as those enjoyed by Youghal, without specific mention of what all those privileges were. However, the power to appoint an assay officer, thus indirectly conferred upon the mayors of Cork, appears to have never been exercised. Under date the 4th of January, 1713 (1714), I find the following entry in the Council Book :" Whereas the Company of Goldsmiths of this City are very desirous to

have an Essay Master within this city, as conceving it will tend very much to the advantage, not only of those of the trade, but to all the inhabitants who have occassion to buy or make up any plate, which being a new thing, there never having been any such person in this city, ordered, that Mr. Thomas Browne do write to Dublin to some friend to enquire the nature of such an officer, as to his commission, who constitutes and empowers him, and as to his fees what he receives, and report to this board.” Mr. Browne's inquiries bore no fruit, for in the same record, under date the 6th of February, 1786, I find this entry :“Ordered that the Bill formerly presented to Parliament for building a bridge over the North branch of the river Lee, &c., be forthwith proceeded on." ..." It., that a clause for establishing an Assay office, for assaying plate in this City, be added to the above Law.” This also seems to have come to nothing, as in the Cork Directory for the following year there is no mention of an assay officer; neither is there mention of one in any of the several Directories of subsequent dates which I have examined, though most of them give the name of even the humblest petty office-holder in the city. The fact appears to be that the body of goldsmiths, after due consideration, came to the conclusion that a regularly appointed assay officer would be an unnecessary expense, and a luxury without which they could very well do. But there was some kind of assay office; and I believe that, at the close of the eighteenth century, it was at the Cork Customhouse all the Cork gold and silver was assayed.

Unfortunately Cork never had a date letter, and before 1656 no marks were stamped upon its plate, but in that year the goldsmiths' guild was formally incorporated in “the city by the Lee,” and thenceforward a maker's mark was almost always used; and for the first sixty years a town mark was sometimes, and after that period invariably, used on pieces of any importance, until shortly before the guild ceased to exist. From the date of the incorporation of the guild, each maker generally stamped his handiwork with his initials; and down to about 1715 each also usually added some heraldic device-generally in the same punch with the initials—as a fleur-de-lis above GR, for George Robinson (Warden in 1690). During these sixty years the town-mark was sometimes the full city arms—a ship in full sail between two castles (either all in one stamp, or in three separate stamps); sometimes part of the arms—a ship with one castle, or two castles—one at each side of the maker's mark. However, before the time of George I., the town-mark was often entirely omitted, plate bearing any of these four varieties of it being the exception rather than the rule. Articles stamped with the full city arms are now extremely rare and valuable. About the year 1715 STERLING (sometimes spelled STARLING, or abbreviated to STER) was adopted as the town-mark, and thereafter invariably used ; and down to about 1730 an heraldic device was sometimes added in the maker's mark, as, for instance, a lion rampant between two I's, for John James (living in 1722). From that time down to about 1800 the initials of the maker with STERLING, are the only marks which appear to have been used; and cases where any attention was paid to the shape of the punch were very infrequent. I believe that, with the beginning of the nineteenth century, the Dublin hall-marks appearadded to the Cork STERLING ; but the earliest combination of Dublin hall- and Cork town-marks which I have seen, is dated a few years later than 1801. I do not think the STERLING mark was much used after about 1830, and certainly before 1850 it was laid aside for ever.

During the eighteenth century immense quantities of silver were manufactured in Cork; and the business was so lucrative, that some of the best county families in the South of Ireland were glad to apprentice their younger sons to leading goldsmiths in “the capital of Munster," and some of these apprentices became wealthy merchants, and high office-holders in the municipality; thus William Newenham was Sheriff in 1732, and George Hodder Mayor in 1754. The corporate existence of the goldsmiths' guild of Cork lingered on to about 1840, but by 1850 it had ceased to exist even in name. However, I am glad to say that the manufacture of the precious metals has never altogether ceased in the city, where Goble and Hodder produced works of art of which any city might justly be proud, and that many useful and pretty articles, in gold and silver, are still made in it. In 1891 the city arms was readopted as the distinguishing town-mark of Cork.

I apprehend that the records of the goldsmiths' guild are lostprobably they were destroyed long ago, and such information as I have been able to obtain has been gathered in leisure hours, during the last ten years, from many different sources.

The list of goldsmiths with which I conclude this Paper is so inferior to what I once hoped it would be, that I give it only because it possesses one quality valued by all antiquaries—it is unique—it is the first list of goldsmiths of Cork ever compiled. I earnestly hope that someone else may make a better list; but the dispersion, in 1888, of the late Dr. Caulfield's invaluable collection of manuscripts relating to Cork, and the destruction of municipal muniments in the disastrous fire which occurred at the Cork Courthouse on the 27th of March, 1891, render it all but certain (and I say it with extreme regret) that a perfect list is now a thing for ever impossible. It was originally my intention that this list should conclude with the year 1800, but, on second thoughts, I have brought it down to 1850. As I have been able to give but very little attention to the part referring to the nineteenth century, that portion must be taken as only intended to give the names of the principal goldsmiths, and, in some instances, as merely suggesting a date which may be only approximately accurate, as that at which the goldsmith retired or died. These dates, and, indeed, many others in my list, I trust that other hands will correct, and thus kindly improve this list of the goldsmiths of the ancient city of Cork.


[In this list, whenever a man is not described as “goldsmith," "silversmith," or “jeweller," it is not certain that he was a goldsmith, &c.; but in every instance there is good reason to believe that he was one.

The leading goldsmiths' names are those given in heavier type than the others.]

Initials. Earliest


Names, &c.

Latest notice.


ML1601 M





Then living


1601 | Morice Leyles, goldsmith, men- | 1617 Mentioned as then living.

1618 Richard Gould, goldsmith, then 1656 Then dead.

IR 1626 | James Rowe, goldsmith, men. 1630 Then living

1632 John Huethson, goldsmith, then 1656 Probably then dead.

1643 James Piersey, then living.

Probably then dead.
1656 John Sharpe, goldsmith, ad-

Probably then dead. mitted a freeman, and elected

master of the guild. NG | 1667 Nicholas Gamble, master, ad- | 1675 Then living.

mitted a freeman, 1670. 1673 James Ridge, master.

1700 Probably then dead. RS 1674 Richard Smart, warden of the 1691

guild. IW John Webb, warden.

1687 Then living. SP 1678 Samuel Pantaine, warden.

1686 Then living. TH 1680 John Hawkins, warden.

1702 Then living. AS 1685 Anthony Semart, goldsmith, “a

French refugee," admitted a / 1700 Probably then dead.

freeman. 1690

George Robinson, warden. 1729 Probably then dead. 11 1691 | John James, silversmith, warden. | Then living, but probably

dead in 1729. Св 1693 | Charles Behegle, warden. 1729 Probably then dead. WB | 1694 Walter Burnett, warden.

1729 Probably then dead. RG | 1694 | Robert Goble, goldsmith, ad. | 1719 Then living, but dead in mitted a freeman, and elected

1722. The period durmaster.

ing which he wrought
was probably from 1691

to 1720.
| 1699 | Adam Billon, admitted a free 1719 | Then living.

GB | 1702 George Brumly, warden. 1729 Probably then dead.
CR | 1702 | Caleb Rathrum, warden.

1746 | Died. TH| 1706 John Harding, warden.

1729 Probably then dead. WC | 1710 | William Clarke, goldsmith, 1733 Died.

warden, admitted a freo

man, 1712. 1710 John Mawman, mentioned. 1729 Probably then dead. 1712 James Foulks, goldsmith, war | Then living, but probably den, admitted a freeman,

dead in 1729. 1718. James Foucauld, jeweller, ad- 1728 Then living, but probably mitted a freeman.

dead in 1729. Bernard Baldwin, mentioned. 1729 Probably then dead.




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