London (change)
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16/01/2014 at 18:32



Does anyone know what this is?  I found it whilst digging in the garden it looks pretty

16/01/2014 at 18:35

No idea, but I like it too  Lucky you!

16/01/2014 at 18:41

How big is it, Gg?  Are there any signs of where a pin was attached on the back?

16/01/2014 at 18:57

Here is a pic of the back just took it

It is height 5cm, width middle bit 3and a half cm's and bottom bit about 5and a half cm's wide

16/01/2014 at 18:58

I wonder if it is one of the ends of a boot mud scraper?  It looks very nice.

16/01/2014 at 19:05


16/01/2014 at 19:28

Not big enough for a trivet only small

16/01/2014 at 19:46

..there looks like an inscription on the bottom left and right...can you read what they are?

16/01/2014 at 19:56

Could it be a fire mark? They were attached to the wall to show which company was insuring the building.

17/01/2014 at 12:25

I had a thought it looks similar to old tea strainers but still not sure, I looked up on Google

I cleaned it up last night it looks more of a silver colour and like mark bottom right on the back of 11

Here is another picture of how it looks now

17/01/2014 at 12:33

Looks to me as if it could be one of those decorative pieces of metals you find on old furniture 

17/01/2014 at 12:41

GG, take it to your local museum. They will tell you straight away if its historical

17/01/2014 at 13:29

Looks like it is part of a decorative hinge, that has snapped off. Is the bottom edge straight and smooth?

17/01/2014 at 18:21

The shape and style reminds me that it could be one half of a nurses buckle worn on their belts. They were usually silver or bronze.

17/01/2014 at 21:56

Edd - it is not completely smooth one bit rough but not sure if it has warn away, it has got a straight edge


17/01/2014 at 23:00

If it has some antique value it is generally better not to clean anything off until you know what you've got,  in case you remove too much important material. I know it's too late for that now but I think it still could be worth an professional opinion.

I'm wondering if it could be what I think was called a 'fire-dog' - a removable little metal shelf from Victorian and Edwardian times, that clipped on to the front of the grate of an open fire to rest a kettle or similar vessel on (a) to boil up the water or (b) to keep it hot after it had boiled. It looks a bit 'art nouveau'.

My grandmother had a couple of these which she used in the winter when the fire was lit.  I seem to remember they were quite ornate pieces of cast iron. If it is a fire-dog there should be evidence of there having once been another metal casting coming off at right angles from the wide end ( at the bottom of your picture). This would have been the bit that clipped onto the grate and the piece you have would have been the bit the kettle rested on. That's if it is a fire-dog!

17/01/2014 at 23:17

My first thought  actually was same as Forester2 - the end of a mud scraper - but I now think it is a bit too small for that since you need weight in those tools to stop them moving while the shoe is scraping on it.

As for tea strainer do you mean a bit like this?

Being flat your piece would have to have come from the handle part, but it is surely too big for that. The tea strainer in my photo is about 10 cm long and about 2 cm across the widest part of the handle (RHS of picture).

Would you think your piece is too heavy for a tea strainer?

17/01/2014 at 23:18

Too small, Birdy - Gg says it is only 5cm x 3.5cm.  It looks purely decorative to me with no obvious fixings other than what could be a broken soldered joint at the lower left on the back.  I think it's likely a decorative buckle from a shoe or somesuch but I do think it is probably quite old and has been protected from corrosion by the coating which may be real silver.

Edit: I see you've since noticed the size   Good call with the tea strainer handle, or possibly the handle from a tea measuring spoon?

17/01/2014 at 23:21

I think you're right Bob - now I think of it my Grandma's fire dogs were quite hefty pieces.

17/01/2014 at 23:27

Gg's piece is the wrong shape and size again for handle tea measuring spoon, I believe.


1 to 20 of 26 messages