c1895 Large Pewter Wall Plaque of Otto von Bismark


A fine looking large circular pewter wall plaque with the portrait bust of the German Iron Chancellor Otto von Bismark (1815- 1898), made by the famous company of J.P. Kayser & Sohn AG (KAYSERZINN). The plaque has, running around the edge, the phrase: ‘Wir Deutsche fürchten Gott, aber sonst nichts in der Welt’. This translates as ‘We Germans Fear God and Nothing Else in the World’, which he famously uttered in 1888. The reverse of the plaque has the Kayserzinn mark and 4096 which dates it to approx. 1895.

In 1862 the Dusseldorf based Kayser family, already in the tin industry, opened a new foundry in the Bockum district of Krefeld. The Krefeld foundry run by Jean Kayser was devoted to mass production, whereby the designs originated from the Cologne studio of Englebert Kayser. At the world exhibitions in Paris (1900), Turin (1902), Dusseldorf and St.Louis (1904), the company enjoyed great success with its "Kayserzinn" or "Kayser pewter", a special lead-free alloy of tin and silver distinguished by its lasting gleam - success which it owed to its outstanding designers: Karl Geyer (1858-1912), Hermann Fauser(1874-1947), Karl Berghof(1881-1967) and others, but their main designer and artistic director was Hugo LEVEN (1874-1956), a name to be compared with that of Liberty's main pewter designer, Archibald KNOX. The decors they designed were inspired by both floral French Art Nouveau and by linear Jugendstil.

Kayserzinn objects in pewter are numbered from the (fictitious) number "4000" onwards and marked with the word "Kayserzinn". All objects were marked this way, either in a circular or oval frame, or horizontally. The model number "4000" was introduced in 1894-5 and the last, number "4999" was produced in 1925.

Size: D:44cm H:2.5cm
Weight: 2200g