I came across this very interesting looking silver piece so I bought it. Later I
discovered that this utensil is called a "Claret spoon". In Osterberg's book
"Sterling Silver Flatware for Dining Elegance", on page 152 he discusses
these unusual spoons. He says that claret spoons were made from the 1880's
through about 1910. The original use is unclear, but some people think that it
was to pick up fruit from the bottom of tall cut-glass claret pitchers. Others
say that the spoon was used to place fruit on individual dishes after it had
been retrieved from deep china pitchers. He expresses doubt as to their
functionality and as to why they were named after the red wine which is
allowed to sit for extended periods. This was not one of the more popular
types of flatware produced, so in today's market they are relatively rare

claret spoon star silver

The spoon as you can see is very long(11.5") and the handle is attached to the bowl with a rattail. The handle is round its entire length and tapers to a point under the bowl. It is marked sterling with a maker name of Delmas. I have been unable to find any definitive information on this maker in my books, but a web search found a silver trophy which had also been manufactured by a Leonard Delmas. I assume that it is the same person.

I suspect that this claret spoon is from after 1900 as it is more the hand crafted "arts and crafts" style rather than the pattern pieces which are shown in the book. The finial is a golden star burst design which I was told that it was acid tested as low quality gold. The finial is "in the round" and the reverse
has the same design

claret spoon

This very long (11.5") claret spoon is in the arts and crafts
tradition. It has a polished red stone (I think it is jasper). It
is marked sterling with a maker of V. Shraub. I have a hard
time visualizing what this spoon could be used for as it is
very thin and consequently not very strong. It is interesting, however

claret spoon

This long (9.2") spoon features a sailing ship finial and an art nuevo lady base with a shell shaped bowl. It was made in Germany of 800 silver (vermeil bowl) by  B & L and I suspect it was made in the late 1880's because the disk below the ship is serrated in the style that was popular at that time. The casting is also nicer and crisper than the usual pieces found in this style. I guess it could be used as either a claret spoon or a very long ice tea  spoon.


An assortment of long claret or stirrer spoons in silver.

spoon birdspoon pagoda asia japan

claret stirrer spoons

I suspect that these stirrers are not silver. The top one is Gorham, but not marked sterling. The bottom one has a hand hammered surface.

claret stirrer spoon fix boy carrier

This is really a very pretty and detailed spoon. The boy is carrying two baskets of fish. Inside each basket are tiny little silver fishes, but I was unable to get the camera to focus on them. But look at the delicate detailed work on this boy and the baskets below.

Persian stirrer spoon coin silver

An  11 inch  stirrer spoon 
which is probably Persian   and featuring a large silver coin in the bowl (800 silver)

Examples of claret jugs from the Kent Collection

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