England, c1780, Masonic Interest




The body with high shoulders in "sugar-loaf" (or mallet) form, resembling the "Masonic maul" and
engraved with three Suns in Splendor within swags of ovals and stars
suspended from floral and foliate sprays with corresponding dependent drops,
above a horizontal band of further ovals and stars, and arch-shaped basal flutes,
the faceted neck with plain lip and a lozenge faceted stopper,
the concave base with lightly polished pontil


Notes on this Decanter :

The likelihood of Masonic interest rests in not only the engraved Sun in Splendor not resting on a torse,
but the decanter's shape in the form of a Masonic Setting Maul

("a symbol, in the Third Degree,
reminding us of the death of the builder of the Temple, which is said to be effected by this instrument…
considered by some to be a symbol of untimely death").


The name "Sugar-Loaf" is taken from the shapes in which sugar was sold in the late 18th century.
"The form was first made about 1750, and enjoyed popularity for about 30 years….
the basic shape, a tapered neck widening to a firmly-formed shoulder
and a body that also tapered outwards toward the base…
.the shoulder becoming less pronounced , and the taper decanter….
remaining popular for the rest of the century"
. (Great British Wine Accessories, Butler, p.130)


Aside Note : There are a number of other British families who bore as their crest the "sun in splendor".
Among them is Pitcairn of Pitcairn House, Perthshire.
However, the leaning remains toward Masonic use, given the decanter shape and great upsurgance
of Freemasonry at that time, amongst both of the genrty and well-to-do trading classes.


Literature : Illustrated in the 2018 edition of The Decanter, Andy McConnell

'This encyclopaedic new edition of The Decanter

(available online, see book & order details bclow)

bolsters the book's reputation as the definitive work on the subject.

Researched and written by Andy McConnell,

The Decanter, is born of twenty years' extensive research.'


The Decanter, Andy McConnell


Condition : Excellent, with slight normal basal residue;
several normal very light scratches to the glass


11" High






Please Inquire












The Decanter, 2018, Andy McConnell  



This encyclopedic new edition of The Decanter bolsters

the book's reputation as the definitive work on the subject.

In presenting the subject across a broad timescale -

spanning ancient Mesopotamia to the modern day -

The Decanter explores the history of glassmaking from a decanter perspective.

The engaging, accessible text explores the stylistic & technical evolution

of fine glassmaking alongside its influences & social uses.

Drawing from documentary sources & the input of experts in Britain, Europe & the US,


The Decanter is the most approachable history of fine glassmaking ever published.

The book comprises full-colour 544 pages, 165,000 words

& 2,650 images that illustrate over 3,500 examples.

The images have been drawn from a stock of 10,000s, from institutions & private collections.

Copies £60 + shipping [to US = £25],

from andy@decanterman.com


Andy McConnell is probably the world's most widely-published journalist

specialising in ancient, antique, vintage & modern glassware.

He has published three books on the subject :

The Decanter, An Illustrated History of Glass, 2004.

20th Century Glass, 2006.

The Decanter, Ancient to Modern, 2018


Mr. McConnell writes for newspapers & journals

& has been the BBC Antiques Roadshow's glass specialist since 2005.

He lectures on the subject &

runs Britain's largest glass gallery/shop in his ancient hometown of Rye,

on the south coast.




Also See :



George III Scottish Silver Goblet, Masonic Interest, Edinburgh, 1782, William Davie



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George III Cut & Engraved Glass Decanter, Masonic Interest, England, c1780 


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