Sheffield plate


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Sheffield plate,

metalware of copper, silver-plated by fusion, originated at Sheffield, England. This process of plating was discovered c.1742 by a Sheffield cutler, Thomas Boulsover, who found while doing repair work on silver and copper that they fused at high temperature and could be hammered and shaped as one metal. He used his discovery to make buttons and buckles, but an apprentice, Joseph Hancock, grasped the broader application and began the production of tableware and other domestic articles that won wide popularity as substitutes for the more expensive solid silver. The manufacture spread not only in England, where Birmingham became an active center of production, but to the Netherlands, Russia, and Poland, where English methods and patterns were adopted. Similar ware was produced in France by a different process. Sheffield plate followed, in general, the contemporary styles in silver, but some original designs were used and in the 19th cent. characteristic flat-chased pieces developed. Early ware was plated on one side only, but c.1765 a method for plating both sides was introduced. Edges were at first soldered, then concealed with plated wire and finally with applied silver edges. Additional silver was embedded in areas to be engraved. German silver, an alloy of nickel, zinc, and copper, came into common use c.1835 and was preferred to copper as a base, since it showed less where the plating wore off. Special hallmarks were used after 1784. Sheffield plate was superseded c.1840 by the cheaper electroplating method.

Sheffield plate

[′she‚fēld ′plāt]
(metallurgy)
A cladding of silver rolled and fused on both sides of a copper sheet.
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References in periodicals archive ?
There's also the chance to see some of the products of Boulton's nearby factory - where buttons and buckles, clocks and vases, and silver and Sheffield plate tableware were made - and where he developed the steam engine in partnership with James Watt.
Further parts of the collection, featuring porcelain - including Mr Miller's impressive teaware collection - Sheffield plate, pictures and ornaments will be sold by Anderson and Garland in late summer and September.
Others will be from the famous alternative to silver: old Sheffield plate, while examples in porcelain, gold, ivory, pottery, glass, treen, mother of pearl, tortoiseshell and other materials will also be on display.
The Sheffield Plate epergne sold at auction for PS740.
This is an example of Old Sheffield Plate, sometimes referred to as fused plate.
Formerly these processes were largely employed in the production of Sheffield plate and gold-filled ware.
At his celebrated Soho Manufactory in Birmingham he produced everything from jewellery, toys and Sheffield plate to sterling silver tableware, medals and modern coinage.
But Boulton was also a leading manufacturer of decorative art objects - typically candelabra, vases, clocks and tableware - produced in a range of materials including silver, Sheffield plate, blue john and ormolu (a form of powdered gold used to coat base metal).
It will include an image of a steam engine and Boulton's Soho Manufactory in Birmingham, which introduced modern metalwork techniques and produced jewellery, coins and Sheffield plate that were exported across the world.
MADE from Sheffield plate, this William Hutton & Sons pen rest/paperweight would have been made in the 1880s.
Head girl Carole Ashton and head boy Trevor Mallinson presented him with a handsome piece of Sheffield plate, watched by deputy head G G Whitehead.
Both the pewter and Sheffield Plate collections benefited from large bequests particularly that of Colonel Croft Lyons.

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