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  1. #1
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    18th October 09
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    interesting Eagle sporran

    Unfortunately the seller is short on both photos and description.

    The sporran is said to be "silver". I know how that can be! Ebay sellers describe things as "silver" all the time that aren't "silver" in the normal sense, that is, Sterling Silver. That being the case I'd like to see closeup photos of the hallmarks. (There are a number of photos of the front of the cantle, none showing the reverse.)

    What's interesting to me is the Eagle motif. Yes I know Eagles show up frequently in European things but this Eagle has an American look to me. Is it just me? Might this sporran have been made for an American client?

    And that pattern looks very familiar too, but I can't place it.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/REMARKABLE-...EAAOSw9LlaiG8V
    Last edited by OC Richard; 19th June 18 at 04:49 AM.
    Proud Mountaineer from the Highlands of West Virginia; son of the Revolution and Civil War; first Europeans on the Guyandotte

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    27th October 09
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    The detail in the metalwork is amazing. But that eagle doesn't look American to me at all. It reminds me more of what you'd see in Germany or Austria, although it's a similar motif all over Europe.

    It would be a huge risk to pay this much for it without seeing the hallmark. But given that laws in the UK are much more strict about using the word "silver", I'm going to assume that it is provably sterling silver, and that one just needs to ask the seller for the proof.

    If I were able to afford really nice collectible sporrans, this one would be hot on my list!

  4. #3
    Join Date
    13th May 18
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    I am not qualified to comment on the ysgreppan/sporran, but I am (I believe) qualified to comment on the Fairbairns on his site; which to my mind, are extremely overpriced. Clearly, this is from the photo only, but older FS, ones with the original issue scabbard, I find are roughly half of his asking price. I may be doing the gentleman a disservice. My point? I wonder if the inflated price reflects across the rest of his items..... Just my observation, and I refer you back to my opening remark
    Dduw Bendithia pob Celtiaid

  5. #4
    Join Date
    27th October 09
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    One clue might be that the American Eagle would face the opposite direction.
    Not my circus, not my monkeys

  6. #5
    Join Date
    14th December 17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tobus View Post
    The detail in the metalwork is amazing. But that eagle doesn't look American to me at all. It reminds me more of what you'd see in Germany or Austria, although it's a similar motif all over Europe.
    I agree that the eagle is not a typical American eagle.
    May you have warm words on a cool evening, a full moon on a dark night, and a smooth road all the way to your door. - Irish Blessing

  7. #6
    Join Date
    12th June 17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Scooter View Post
    I agree that the eagle is not a typical American eagle.
    So when I saw it, it seemed like someone took a Union Eagle from the 1870s-1890s period and dropped down the shield

    http://www.ushist.com/img/props/imag...olid-brass.jpg

    Or

    https://m.skinnerinc.com/auctions/2431/lots/543

    Or, this even older version

    https://nmscarcheologylab.files.word...7/1568_001.jpg

    https://nmscarcheologylab.files.word...sama_eagle.jpg

    I suspect a craftsman in Scotland may have been asked for a description and the person who had it made provided

    An American Eagle, wings spread, facing forward clutching a Union Shield in its talons....

    Also, there are numerous historic examples of the American Union Eagle facing to the viewers left and the viewers right. That is different than the Seal of the United States and the way it was adopted with its facings.

    Just a thought.

    Rod

  8. #7
    Join Date
    21st May 08
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    Inverness-shire, Scotland & British Columbia, Canada
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    I suppose the seller could be asked to provide a 'good' pic of the hallmarks, if any. Edit: I've done that and will report on any (if any) response.
    Last edited by ThistleDown; 19th June 18 at 09:35 PM.

  9. #8
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    hugely over-priced, as are his other Scottish items.

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  11. #9
    Join Date
    27th October 09
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    Quote Originally Posted by RodF View Post
    I suspect a craftsman in Scotland may have been asked for a description and the person who had it made provided

    An American Eagle, wings spread, facing forward clutching a Union Shield in its talons....

    Also, there are numerous historic examples of the American Union Eagle facing to the viewers left and the viewers right. That is different than the Seal of the United States and the way it was adopted with its facings.
    I'm not sure why everyone is fixated on this eagle having anything to do with the United States. The item is in England. It seems (to me, at least) unlikely that it was made in Scotland for an American and then somehow ended up back over there in the UK. The only thing vaguely American about it is that it has an eagle, but Americans aren't the only ones who use an eagle. Almost every country has some sort of symbol like that.

    When we look at the motif of the design, we see thistles, an eagle, and a shield with what appear to be heraldic symbols in it. I have never delved into heraldic devices, so perhaps those with a better understanding of the symbology may have something to offer. The shield-shaped area that the eagle is sitting on does seem to be patterned in the "lozengy" style, with some sort of symbols repeating in each diamond*. This has to mean something important, to take up that much room on the cantle. It is most definitely not the seal of the United States.

    *edited to add: a quick Google search shows that those symbols represent ermine, an important symbol in heraldry. This points us more conclusively to this being a heraldic design, and having nothing to do with the United States.
    Last edited by Tobus; 20th June 18 at 06:15 AM.

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  13. #10
    Join Date
    12th June 17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tobus View Post
    I'm not sure why everyone is fixated on this eagle having anything to do with the United States. The item is in England. It seems (to me, at least) unlikely that it was made in Scotland for an American and then somehow ended up back over there in the UK. The only thing vaguely American about it is that it has an eagle, but Americans aren't the only ones who use an eagle. Almost every country has some sort of symbol like that.

    When we look at the motif of the design, we see thistles, an eagle, and a shield with what appear to be heraldic symbols in it. I have never delved into heraldic devices, so perhaps those with a better understanding of the symbology may have something to offer. The shield-shaped area that the eagle is sitting on does seem to be patterned in the "lozengy" style, with some sort of symbols repeating in each diamond*. This has to mean something important, to take up that much room on the cantle. It is most definitely not the seal of the United States.

    *edited to add: a quick Google search shows that those symbols represent ermine, an important symbol in heraldry. This points us more conclusively to this being a heraldic design, and having nothing to do with the United States.
    Totally agree Tobus that this could be something completely different and not related to the USA at all. Good point about the lozengy/ermine representation as well.

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