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Hand Blown Pillar Moulded Scottish Half Gill Spirit Measure c1890

Heading : A mid 19th century pillar moulded half gill spirit measure
Date :
Period :
Origin :
Colour :
Neck :
Applied ring and engraved fill line
Body :
Pillar moulded
Base :
Glass Type : Lead free
Size : 10.2cm tall
Weight : 216 grams

Measures with sand blasted or cut measuring lines became mandatory under law in the 1878 weights and measures act. Mesures, as eveidenced by this example, mirror contemporary styles for carafes and decanters. This pillar moulded example with applied neckring may have been manufactured prior to 1878 and had the measuring line added some years later post the legislation

In Northern Ireland and Scotland the standard measure for spirits was 1/4 gill and a half gill was "a double". In England and Wales the standard measure was 1/5th of a gill. This difference was the result of a combination of different tax regimes and the English obsession with gin.

We have run an experiment with the measures that we do have. The variance in capacity of a quarter gill measure was the highest. These are all Scottish measures with "fill lines". None had greater than a quarter gill capacity, all were below, some by 19 percent. This demonstrates that either some were poorly made or they had fill lines added after 1878. The fact that a Scotsman would rob another Scotsman or anyone else for that matter was never beyond doubt.  It was not until 1963 that it became illegal to sell short measures.


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  • Product Code: 2019311034
  • Availability: Sold
  • £40.00

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