Two-handled covered cup

About 1740–50
Jacob Hurd (American, 1702 or 1703–1758)

Object Place: Boston, Massachusetts

Catalogue Raisonné

Buhler, 1972, No. 187


Overall: 34.3 x 30.5 x 21 cm (13 1/2 x 12 x 8 1/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


On View

Carolyn A. and Peter S. Lynch Gallery (Gallery 132)




Silver hollowware

Hurd’s monumental, two-handled cups are among the masterpieces of Boston Baroque silver. This one was made for John Rowe and is beautifully engraved with his coat of arms. Graceful in stance and majestic in bearing, the cup presents a perfectly balanced composition of smooth surfaces and flowing handles and moldings. Although it is not known how Rowe acquired this cup, Bostonians often gave Hurd’s cups as presentation pieces to reward sea captains and military heroes. At least one was used to hold Bishop, a sweet drink made of wine, oranges or lemons, and sugar mixed with mulled and spiced port. Bishop was drunk as the cup was passed from hand to hand.


John Rowe (b. Exeter, England, November 27, 1715; emigrated 1735; d. 1787); m. Hannah Speakman (1725-1805), 1743; his nephew, John Rowe; his granddaughter, Mrs. Caleb Loring Cunningham (nee Anne Rowe), from whom it was purchased by the MFA in October 1936 for $5,500.

Credit Line

Helen and Alice Colburn Fund