Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object

Toasting fork

possibly British, Norfolk
Silver, exotic hardwood
Length: 34 1/2 in. (87.6 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of Irwin Untermyer, 1968
Accession Number:
Not on view
One of only two known 16th-century toasting forks, this was used to toast apples, cheese, or "puddings" in front of a fire. The inlaid initials, outline of a railing, and a tun (a type of band) create a rebus that may refer to a member of the Railton family of Norfolk.
Inscription: Engraved end of opposite mount: G.R. with rebus

Engraved between tines: 1561
George Railton ; A. G. Paterson (until 1966; sale, Christie's, London, January 27, 1966, lot no. 148; sold for £1,350 to S. J. Phillips); [ S. J. Phillips Ltd. ,1966; sold on April 12, 1966 to Irwin Untermyer ] ; Irwin Untermyer (1966–68; to MMA)
Related Objects

Wine cooler (one of a pair)

Artist: William Lukin I (British, active 1699– ca.1755) Date: 1716/17 Medium: Silver Accession: 68.141.128 On view in:Gallery 510

Wine cistern

Artist: Lewis Mettayer (British, active 1700, died 1740) Date: 1709–10 Medium: Silver Accession: 68.141.132 On view in:Gallery 517

Tankard engraved with scenes depicting the Fire of London and the Great Plague

Artist: I N (British, mid-late 17th century) Date: 1675/76 Medium: Silver Accession: 1987.54 On view in:Gallery 510

Fruit stand

Artist: Paul Storr (British, 1771–1844) Date: 1814/15 Medium: Gilt silver Accession: 65.205a, b On view in:Gallery 509

Pair of vases with covers

Artist: I H (British, mid–late 17th century) Date: 1675–76 Medium: Silver gilt Accession: 68.141.152a, b, .153a, b On view in:Gallery 511