FREDERICK THE GREAT

by Wayne Bednersh

Frederick II aka Frederick the Great  (1740–1786) was the King of Prussia and prince-elector of the Holy Roman Empire.


There is a tremendous amount of information about Frederick, so I will simply summarize a few details, but if you are interested in more information use Wikipedia.


1. He is primarily known as the king who consolidated the Holy Roman Empire.

2. He attacked Austria and became a renown military figure. Many regard him as one of the best military strategists of all times.

3. He was known as an 'enlightened absolute monarch'. He was definitely a strong prince, but he also followed some of the beliefs of his good friend, Voltaire, who believed in an enlightened approach from the king. He thought of himself as a "philosopher king".

4. He modernized the Prussian bureaucracy and civil service.

5. He is known to have promoted religious tolerance throughout his realm. This was most unusual at this point in time. However, like many of his fellow countrymen he did not trust the Jews (but he did tolerate them).  

6. He died childless and there is a lot of debate among historians as to his sexual proclivities.

frederick the great silver spoon fridenous

I have included a ruler and a normal tea sized spoon to help you guage size of this magnificent silver server.

The caption says :

Fridenous

Borussorum. rex

1740 -1786

The statue and plinth are atop the Imperial Prussian eagle and crown

There are two  marks with a wiggly line between them.

A wiggly line often means that the silver was assayed at that point, but I suspect that this is a pseudo mark because of the location of the other marks

The marks trace this spoon to J.D. Schleissner and Sohne of Hanau, Germany ca. 1876 - 1900

This firm was known to use sterling silver, (but also used lesser grades of silver) and they also exhibited at the 1893 Chicago Worlds Fair and again at the 1904 St. Louis worlds fair.

The finial, stem and heart shaped bowl appear to be cast with hand touch up.


frederick the great silver server spoon

The finial shows an elaborately costumed Frederick with a triangular shaped hat and holding a riding crop  in his right  hand.

The left hand is in his pocket. The sword is surrounded by epaulets. The boots are a dress variety and do not have spurs.

frederick the great back

The back of the finial is nicely finished and shows his long hair 'pony tail style'

This very large spoon pays tribute to a very important king.

Frederick the great coin spoon 1773 prussian

This is a 1/3 Taler Prussian coin bowl  from the era of Frederick the Great,  struck at the mint in Breslau and is dated 1773.
Note: this is a .666 fine silver coin that has been gold washed.

click to see other old German Prussian coin spoons

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