The Drapers’ Company has an extensive collection of silver and silver-gilt plate, which have either been given by members and others as gifts or have been commissioned by the Company for a specific occasion.
During the 16th and 17th centuries, plate was sometime melted down for various reasons but a few early items have survived. The most treasured item is the silver-gilt cup and cover presented by William Lambarde in 1578. Around the rim of the cup is the inscription A proctour of the poore am I, remember theim before thou dye which sums up the philanthropic purpose of the Company today.
Much of the collection, such as the rosewater dishes, candelabra, loving cups and maces are used at ceremonial occasions. The Master’s Jewel was presented in 1882 and is regularly worn.
There are a number of purely decorative items. The Lunula, a Celtic decorative collar of fine gold, dated 2000 - 1500 BC, was found on the Company’s Irish Estate. The badge of the Company’s Bargemaster (1671) surrounded by those once worn by the oarsmen who rowed the Company’s barge.
The collection also contains several modern pieces. Most recently, the Company purchased a copy of Anita Lafford’s silver statue of Her Majesty The Queen mounted on Burmese, and in 1995 commissioned three beautifully chased rosewater dishes from Michael Lloyd.