To adore the dvor - Russian jardinière centrepiece

To adore the dvor – Russian jardinière centrepiece

I always like our shop display items to say ‘go find another one’. One of our store’s latest acquisitions most definitely falls into that category.

It comes in the form of a very versatile jardinière centrepiece that may be used as for a floral tribute, a planter, a Champagne chiller or a large fruit bowl. At a dinner party, this centrepiece used in any form would ensure it is a topic of conversation.

Our gorgeous and graceful antique jardinière centrepiece, dated circa 1880, is from the pre-Russian Bolshevik revolutionary period. The design. encapsulates the Louis XV neoclassical rococo style that was very popular for the era. The ostentatious, highly elaborate detailing of the Russian silversmith emphasises the highest quality workmanship.

This stunning jardinière or cachepot planter (an ornamental receptacle to hold or conceal a flowerpot) was made during the European Belle Époque period of indulgence, opulence and frivolity. They were typically forged and cast from silver and made throughout Moscow and St Petersburg.

“The table centrepiece, or JARDINIÈRE, would have been privately commissioned by one of Russia’s leading families of nobility’

The surmounted coronet depicts the nobility of the family: a very wealthy titled land owner would have been referred to as a dvor, deriving from the Russian word dvorianstvo from Slavonic dvor, meaning the court of a prince or duke (kniaz), an aristocrat of the 19th century. The system of hierarchy was a system of seniority known as mestnichestvo. The word dvoriane described the highest rank of gentry, who performed duties at the royal court – a nobleman was referred to as a dvorianin.

The title passed through the male agnatic line to further descendants, or by royal decree could be passed through the female lineage to preserve a notable distinguished family name.

The table centrepiece, or jardinière, would have been privately commissioned by one of Russia’s leading families of nobility. The intricate design was not by accident but depicts many hidden symbols. The jardinière displays embossed scrolling leaves, and floral decoration with bowed garlands symbolising victory and honour.

The intricate basketwork and oyster shells on the stabilising base denote wealth and prosperity. The fine craftsmanship depicts a family gathering – the characters are dressed in fine period clothing set in a relief panel symbolising wealth, longevity and nobility. The upper cartouche is blank apart from a small shield and the letter N, which is accepted to represent a noble family. It was also commissioned in 925-grade silver, exclusively used for only the finest silverware items or for a family of the highest echelons of Russian society. The ram’s head-ringed handles also have a significant meaning dating back to the Greek Laconian and Ionian periods – virility and power.

We are always searching for fantastic items for our shop window display.

Why not drop into the store and see what your items may be worth?

Share this article