Auction Highlight – Charles II wassail bowl

Very interesting, especially to those of us who have partaken in wassail festivities

Among the highlights of the first day of Woolley & Wallis’ Furniture and Works of Art sale on July 6-7 was this wassail bowl and cover. A textbook Charles II example made in lignum vitae c.1660-70, it came for sale from the estate of Peter Mactaggart (1931-2020) whose family ran an antiques shop in Welwyn, Hertfordshire from the late 1940s to the early 1970s.

“Remarkably the lid retains, to the underside, its brass and Surrey enamel type roundel or ‘print’ depicting the Royal Coat of Arms of Charles II. When the piece was featured in Apollo magazine in December 1936 as part of an article titled ‘The Wassail Bowl and the Custom of Wassailing at Christmas Time’, the author Owen Evan-Thomas wrote: ‘This is the only wassail bowl I have ever seen containing under the lid its original ‘print’.”

Estimated at £6000-8000, it sold at £8500.

Thank you Antiques Trade Gazette