Jan & John Maggs

Antiques and Art

 

Celebrate the New Year

with this

Feast of Treenware

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We recently had the opportunity to purchase part of a large collection of treenware.

Some of these pieces have been posted on our website, but most were still sitting in the boxes in which we packed them.

We thought it would be fun to post two dozen of them, grouped by form.

This page is the result of that idea.

 

Because we've priced most of these pieces very near our cost, prices are all NET.

To cover some of the cost of shipping the least expensive of these pieces, we will add $5.00 to each total purchase under $100.

For example, two $45 pieces will cost $90 + $5 = $95. A $95 piece and a $45 piece will cost $140 – i.e., free shipping.

 

Click any thumbnail below for description, more pictures, and price.
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Mortars and Pestles

 

 

Mortars (the bowls) and their accompanying pestles (the club-shaped parts) have been used since the stone age to pulverize food and other solid substances, transforming them into powders or pastes.

Mortars and pestles have been essential tools in the kitchen and the pharmacy for centuries.

In our own kitchen, we have a small porcelain set that receives almost daily use, grinding herbs to release their flavors.

The larger examples here were most likely used to grind grains in small batches for domestic consumption.

 

Click on any thumbnail for details and more pictures.

 

$145 each

 

     

 

         

 

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Covered containers

 

 

Covered hardwood containers like these were probably intended for the storage of spices and small quantities of grain or tobacco.

In today’s world, where plastic is used in the creation of comparable storage containers, pieces like these have become anachronistic, and consequently collectible for their aesthetic, rather than utilitarian value.

But who knows what they might keep safe in today’s world?

 

Click on any thumbnail for details and more pictures.

 

$95 each

 

 

  

 

  

 

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Sanders

 

 

Sanders, or pounce pots, were made in many shapes in both wood and metal.

Their purpose was to hold pounce or sand, a granular material not typically derived from stone, but from ground cuttlefish bone or resin from the sandarac tree (perhaps the “sand” in “sander”?).

The pounce was shaken over wet ink, which presumably dried more quickly than if left to bleed through the fibers of the paper of the day.

 

The wooden forms are our favorites.

The piece was turned from a single block of wood, and its interior was hollowed out on the lathe.

After the turning was complete, several small holes were drilled into the shallow cupped top, and a plug was inserted into the bottom, which was then covered with fabric.

The holes drilled into the top were arranged in a pattern, and various star shapes, like in these sanders, are the most common.

 

The pounce material was poured into the shallow bowl and then eased through the holes using a finger.

After use, the drying material could be returned to the sander as it was first introduced, giving us an example of an early recycling practice.

 

Click on any thumbnail for details and more pictures.

 

$95 each

 

   

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Treenware miniatures

 

 

A varied selection of early miniature wooden domestic pieces, each with a unique appeal. 

The engine-turned inkwell employs a complex mechanized technique originating in Tudor times. 

The three compotes appear to have been pole turned; each is technically and aesthetically outstanding. 

The little table salt, although the latest of the five, could easily find a spot on the modern dinner table.

 

Click on any thumbnail for details and more pictures.

 

$45 each

 

 

 

  

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Miscellaneous pieces

 

 

This final group of larger treen pieces include a communal salt, a tall, spindly mortar and pestle, and a heavy mahogany mortar.

 

Click on any thumbnail for details and more pictures.

 

$65 each

  

      

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