Wine Cup

Samuel Edwards American

Not on view

Made around 1740, this tall, stately wine cup once belonged to the West Church on Lynde Street in Boston, as indicated by its engraved inscription, "Belongs / To the Church / in Lynde Street, Boston." Its identical mate is now in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The symmetrical, densely configured cartouche is slightly old-fashioned for this date, although consistent with the conservative nature of church plate.

The provenance of the West Church’s silver reflects the changing fortunes of the congregation. The original church, a wood-frame structure built in 1737, was used as barracks by British soldiers in the years leading up to the Revolutionary War. Severely damaged during the War, the building was reconstructed in 1806. By the late nineteenth century, many affluent families had moved from Boston’s once-exclusive West End to the newly fashionable Back Bay. The Church disbanded its congregation in 1887; the building was closed in 1894; and the church silver was dispersed in 1892. This wine cup was given to the Dorchester Church, from which it was later sold to collector and Metropolitan Museum benefactor Alphonso T. Clearwater (1848–1933).

Wine Cup, Samuel Edwards (1705–1762), Silver, American

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.