Art/ Collection/ Art Object

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

O S (British, ca. 1673–1677)
British, London
Overall (confirmed): 7 3/8 × 9 × 6 in., 35 oz. 18 dwt. (18.7 × 22.9 × 15.2 cm, 1116.501g)
Credit Line:
Gift of Mrs. Henry S. Morgan, 1986
Accession Number:
Not on view
The scenes engraved on these tankards depict the traumatic events of the Fire of London (1666) and the Great Plague (1665). The tankards were commissioned as gifts to the friends of Sir Edmund Berry Godfrey, who was granted a knighthood in recognition of his services to the city. He was later murdered, perhaps by parties wishing to overthrow Charles II and re-establish Catholic rule.
Inscription: Engraved above above cartouche of plague scene: (left of arms),
Ex Dono E: BG: Militis/ Irenarchae Seduli, Intergerimi; /quem/ post Egregiam in fugandâ peste praestitam operam/ Carolus Secundus Semper Augustus/ Assensu Procerum a Secretis Conciliis/ In Perpetuam tantae pietatis memoriam/ Agenteo donavit Oenophoro, et vere Regio/ Hoc Ampliore modo insignito/ (Given by E.B.G. gentleman (Edmund Berry Godfrey) a careful and trustworthy Justice of the Peace. His Majesty Charles II gave him a silver flagon with the assent of his Privy Council in perpetual recognition of his faithfulness to duty and the outstanding and practical measures he took to mitigate the plague)

Engraved below cartouche of plague scene: (left of arms),
Gratia Dei et Regis Caroli Secundi/ pestis sibi salus/ E: BG: 1665 (By the Grace of God and King Charles II. What was a plague to others, to him was wealth. E.B.G. 1665)

Engraved above cartouche of fire of London scene: (right of arms),
vir revera Reipublicae Natus,/ Cum urbem Imanis vastabat Ignis,/ Dei Providentiâ et virtute suâ/ Flamarum Medio, Tutus, et Illustris/

Engraved below cartouche of fire of London scene: (right of arms),
Deinde Cogente Rege/ (At Merito) Emicuit Eques Auratus/ E: BG: 7bris 1666/ Caetera Loquentur Pauperes et Trivia.

Marking: [1] OS (or S. O) with fleur de lys on top (maker's mark);
[2] Leopard's head crowned (London assay office mark);
[3] Lion passant guardant (English quality mark for sterling);
[4] Q in pointed shield (London date letter for 1673–74).

Location of marks:
[1]–[4] on wall of tankard near handle, across lid
[1] also on handle
J. Pierpont Morgan (by 1901–d. 1913; to his son) ; by descent, J. P. Morgan Jr. , New York (from 1913) ; Mrs. Henry S. Morgan (until 1986; to MMA)
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