Richard Cook, London, 1800

Crested For 'Earl Grey'


George III Silver Bougie Box, Richard Cook, London, 1800, Crested for Earl Grey 


Of deep circular drum form with reeded loop handle to one side,
an applied receptacle for the conical extinguisher with flame finial to the other,
the lift-off concave cover having a central taper opening with flaring collar and air hole,
the side and cover each with the crest of Earl Grey :
A scaling ladder or hooked and pointed sale,
the crest ensigned with an earl's coronet;


Crest Earl Grey, Northumberland, England

the box fully marked to the base, lion passant on the cover rim;

the extinguisher with three marks to the side, maker's mark to rubbed to read




"Bougie" is French for candle,
and so named by the French for an Algerian city known for trading in candle wax.
Their use dates from the early 18th century on the Continent and the mid-18th century in England.
These small cylindrical boxes held wax-taper coils,
the cover having a small hole through which the coiled taper could emerge for lighting.
In England, the bougie box became a piece of desk equipment, similar to the wax jack,
for lighting heating sealing wax.
They were more practical than the wax jack for traveling –
thus often doubling as a source for lighting.
Bougie boxes were usually made from more precious materials than wax jacks –
therefore favored more only by the wealthy.


Condition : Excellent with minor wear appropriate to age and usage;

crest engravings crisp;

abrasions within the taper opening and a few minor scratches surrounding;

a few minor bends to the cover rim; some stubborn tarnishing to the interior


4" High / 3.8 oz.






Please Inquire



George III Silver Bougie Box, Richard Cook, London, 1800, Crested for Earl Grey 







The Crest of Earl Grey


The crest as engraved upon this George III English Sterling Silver Bougie Box by Richard Cooke

hallmarked London 1800 is that of Earl Grey.

It may be blazoned as follows:

Crest: A scaling ladder or hooked and pointed sable

The crest is ensigned with an earl's coronet.

Given the date of manufacture of this bougie box it was undoubtedly in the possession of

General Sir Charles Grey (baptised 23rd October 1729 died 14th November 1807), the 1st Earl Grey.

Charles was the third son of Sir Henry Grey, the 1st Baronet

of Howick in the County of Northumberland and his wife, Hannah Wood.1


He was a distinguished officer in the British Army.

He served in Scotland during the Jacobite Rising of 1745 after which he was posted to Gibraltar for several years.

Charles later saw service during the Seven Years War and, notably in

North American in the American War of Independence being promoted to the rank of Major General in 1777

and commanded the 3rd Brigade at the Battle of Brandywine on the 11th September 1777.

He also commanded the 3rd Brigade at the Battles of Germantown and Monmouth

on the 4th October 1777 and 28th June 1778.

He later was appointed commander-in-chief of the British troops in America,

but hostilities ended before he could take command.

At this time Charles was promoted to his terminal rank of Lieutenant General.

He was appointed as a Knight of the Order of the Bath on the 8th September 1783.

During Britain's conflict with Revolutionary France, Charles was appointed

Commander of the West Indian expedition in 1793.

As such, Charles was involved with Admiral Sir John Jervis in actions on the Island of Martinique in early 1794,

capturing Fort Royal and Fort Saint Louis on the 22nd March, and Fort Bourbon on the 24th March.

He also led the Invasion of Guadeloupe with the assistance once again of Admiral Sir John Jervis on the

11th April 1794, although the French revolutionaries regained control of the island

by the 10th December of that year.

After his military exploits, Charles was appointed as the Governor of the Island of Guernsey,

in the Channel Islands in 1797 until 1807.

He was also appointed as the Commander of Southern District from 1798 to 1799

when he retired from the army.

Between the years of 1797 and 1807 Charles was the

Governor of the Island of Guernsey 2 in the Channel Islands.


In recognition of his service to the Crown, Charles was raised to the peerage as Baron Grey of Howick

in the County of Northumberland on the 23rd June 1801 and later advanced in the peerage as

Viscount Howick in the County of Northumberland and Earl Grey on the 11th April 1806.

All these peerages were within the Peerage of the United Kingdom.

Charles married Elizabeth Grey (born 10th May 1746 died 26th May 1822),the daughter of George Grey,

of Southwick in the County of Durham and his wife, Elizabeth Ogle on the 8th June 1762.

Their eldest son, Charles Grey, the 2nd Earl Grey became the First Lord of the Treasury

(Prime Minister of the United Kingdom) in 1830 until 1834.

The eponymous tea is said to be named after the 2nd Earl.


1 Hannah was the daughter of Thomas Wood, of Fallodon, Co. No

2 The Bailiwick of Guernsey - a British Crown dependency. The jurisdiction is made up of ten parishes

on the island of Guernsey, three other inhabited islands (Herm, Jethou and Lihou), and many small islets and rocks.


The Armorial Bearings of Earl Grey.


The Armorial Bearings of Earl Grey.


Heraldry by John Tunesi of Liongam


Beacon Genealogical & Heraldic Rersearch


MSc, FSA Scot, Hon FHS, QG











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George III Silver Bougie Box, Richard Cook, London, 1800, Crested for Earl Grey 


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