Date Created: 19 April 2018
Horseracing is characteristically known as the ‘Sport of Kings’ and this notion was exemplified when King William III of the Netherlands presented a large centrepiece to William Stuart Stirling Crawfurd for winning a race not once, but twice, with the same horse in the years of 1851 and 1852.
165 years later this fine centrepiece was the top selling lot from the Fine Silver & Vertu sale at Salisbury salerooms Woolley & Wallis on 25th and 26th April.
Each year King William III (1817-1890) held a private race in Dorn, Holland, to which he invited owners and trainers to bring their horses. His passions in life were the breeding and racing of horses and birds of prey.
Before becoming King, he and his brother reinstated the old practice of falconry at the palace of Het Loo.
The two brothers created the Royal Loo Hawking Club and this is maybe where the inspiration for the trophy came from; it is modelled as a lady falconer seated on a horse, holding her falcon in hand and about to let it fly.
The impressive trophy stands 71cm high, it was made by a London silversmith John Samuel Hunt, and is marked for London 1851.
Acquired by the Rijksmuseum (a purchase made possible by an anonymous donor), for a hammer price of £36,000, it will be returning to the country from which it was commissioned.
Author: London silversmith John Samuel Hunt
Source: The Internet
Link to Website: https://www.somersetlive.co.uk/news/local-news/salisbury-auction-house-sees-best-53346