Antique Victorian Quadruple Silver Plate Butter Dishes
Abe offers the following fine antique silverplate, Victorian Quadruple Silver Plate (Silverplate) Covered Domed Silver Butter Dish Dishes for sale.
In preparation for downsizing Abe Silverman's Antique Silver Shop for a major move, I'm slashing prices on everything in the shop (at my loss) to accommodate my new "smaller digs" and a reduction in moving costs! Look for the "CLEARANCE SALE" note on nearly everything in the shop! All reasonable offers WILL BE considered!
Everything MUST GO!
About Silver Plate and Silverplate Covered Butter Dishes
Years ago, cooking in America called for tremendous amounts of butter. Though margarine made its appearance during World War II, there was no substitute for butter when most of the silver shown on this page was produced.
In order to use butter in the large one-pound blocks in which it was generally sold, a dish was invented that not only helped with the presentation at the table, but was a necessity. Most silver and silverplate butter dishes consist of three silver parts: the lid, the pierced liner, and the base. Butter was placed on the liner, allowing the excess water from the butter to drain through the piercing. If the weather was warm, ice was added with the butter on top, and the melting ice could drain through the piercing.
These silver and silverplated dishes are also known as domed butter dishes, covered butter dishes and just butter dishes. These more ornate butter dishes are less common than the more commonly seen rectangular butter dishes - just slightly larger than a stick of modern butter. Rarely does one see these rounded butter dishes in use anymore, and they have achieved a strong collecting following.
For fancy dinners, the hostess may have had one of the servants make fancy molded pieces of butter called “butter pats” or butter balls, which were served on crushed ice in the butter dish to be picked up with a butter pick. These required yet another butter serving piece, itself known as a “butter pat.” Butter pats were tiny plates placed at each individual setting, to be used for a single piece of butter. They range in diameter from approximately 2 ¼ inches to about 3 ¼ inches, and were made in sterling as well in porcelain. Many sterling silver companies produced butter pats to match their sterling flatware patterns.
As butter began to be commercially produced for distribution in individually wrapped quarter pound cubes, the large form became obsolete. Thus the butter dish began a new form. This new dish usually had a crystal liner, to protect the silver from the salt used in making the butter. Most of the new butter dish forms are 8 – 9 inches long.