Spanish Colonial
18th century

Object Place: Probably Mexico


Height: 22.8 cm (9 in.), diameter of rim: 3 1/16 in. (7.7 cm), diameter of base: 5 5/8 (13.5 cm), weight: 13 oz, 10 dwt 7 gr (420.4 gm)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Gilt silver with bronze or copper stem and foot

Out on Loan

Out On Loan


Americas, Europe


Silver hollowware

Raised, inverted bell-shaped bowl with everted rim surmounts baluster stem and splayed, circular foot.




By 1878, unearthed from property on Oneida Street, St. Augustine, Florida, by property owners William H. Keith (b. 1803 - d. 1885) and Harriet Lovett Keith (b. 1837 - d. 1917), St. Augustine and exhibited at Bigelow, Kennard and Co., Boston; 1880, placed on loan to the MFA; passed by descent and in 1928, given to the MFA. (Accession Date: August 21, 1928)

NOTE: It is not known when this object, along with six other pieces of ecclesiastical silver (MFA accession nos. 28.464 – 28.470) was buried. The cross (28.468) is inscribed with the date 1721 and the name of the Spanish governor and captain general of Florida, Antonio de Benavides (1718 – 1734). It has been suggested that the silver was buried after Spain ceded Florida to the United States in 1821, in response to fears that the U.S. government might seize church property. See Jeannine Falino, Silver in the Americas, 1600-2000. American Silver in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (MFA, Boston, 2008), pp. 465-466, cat. no. 370, and pp. 524-525, Appendix I.

Credit Line

Gift in memory of Mr. and Mrs. William H. Keith