A charming 18th century silver marriage cup , the bowl engraved with coats of arms and the initials MR and AR . Assay marks and makers mark and the London import mark for 1957 underneath.
Marriage cups – or loving cups – are part of a centuries-old German wedding tradition that can trace its origins back to 15th-century Nuremberg in Germany. According to legend, a wealthy nobleman disapproved of his daughter’s choice of a husband, a goldsmith. The father had the goldsmith sent to a dungeon, but rather than ending his daughter’s love for the goldsmith, the girl fell gravely ill. Finally, in desperation, her father agreed to a test for her beloved. If the goldsmith could make a chalice that two people could drink from at the same time without spilling a drop, the pair could wed. The goldsmith created a chalice with two cups, known as the swivelling cup, and they were permitted to marry.
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