Goldsmiths, Silversmiths and Bankers: Innovation and the Transfer of Skill 1550 to 1750

David Mitchell
Institute of Historical Research
Subject Areas


This lavishly-illustrated collection of ten papers originates from a study day held at the Victoria and Albert Museum in November 1993, 'Innovation and Skill in Goldsmiths' Work'. The essays included here consider the many changes which took place between 1550 and 1750. In England, this period witnessed dramatic developments in the form and style of plate, in new consumer demand, in the organisation of manufacture, in the use of more focused sales techniques and in the expansion of the banking services provided by the goldsmith. The role of apprenticeship in the transfer of skill across the generations in three centres - Paris, Zurich and London - is discussed, together with the question of skill transfer between immigrant and native goldsmiths.


  • Introduction
    Philippa Glanville
  • 'Innovation and the transfer of skill in the goldsmiths' trade in Restoration London
    David Mitchell
  • Goldsmiths' apprenticeship during the first half of the seventeenth century: the situation in Paris
    Michèle Bimbenet-Privat
  • 'Training and workshop practive in Zurich in the seventeenth century'
    Hanspeter Lanz
  • 'Aliens and their impact on the goldsmiths' craft in London in the sixteenth century
    Lien Bich Luu
  • 'Balances and goldsmith-bankers: the co-ordination and contraol of inter-banker debt clearing in seventeenth-century London'
    Stephen Quinn
  • 'The interaction between English and Huguenot goldsmiths in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries'
    Emma Packer
  • '"The King's Arms and Feathers". A case study exploring the networks of manufacture operating in the London goldsmiths' trade in the eighteenth century'
    Helen Clifford
  • 'The design of London goldsmiths' shops in the early eighteenth century'
    Claire Walsh
  • 'The goldsmiths and the London luxury trades, 1550 to 1750'
    John Styles


'..these essays represent essential reading for anyone interested in skilled industry in the early modern period'
Economic History Review

Paperback; 248 x 172 mm; viii, 120pp.; 53 b&w illus.(Alan Sutton Publishing Limited; Centre for Metropolitan History Working Papers Series No. 2)
Price: £9.99
NB: This publication is now out of print. Contact the CMH.

Published: Mar 1995 ISBN: 0 7509 0908 0