Mid 19thC Wood Steel Ecclesiastical Anglo-Russian Desk Seal
This seal has an exciting story to tell but more of that in the next paragraph. The ebonised wood handle is of flat-topped inverted baluster form, banded at the base of the shaft with threaded screw into a steel collar with two bands of gadrooning above the navette-shaped matrix engraved with the figures of the Madonna and Child between the date 17-23, below an ecclesiastical arch and above the head of a winged angel, within an inscription in gothic script and beaded border.
SIGILLUM : ECCLESIAE : ANGLIC : S : PETERSBURGII
This seal commemorates the foundation of the English (Anglican) Church in St Petersburg in 1723. According to copious notes form various sources in the files, the Russia Company (similar to the East India Companies) had established a British Factory in Russia which was, in the early part of the 18th century mobile. Before 1717 the British Factory was based in Moscow, moving to Archangel between 1717 and 1723 when it was first based in St Petersburg.
Diameter of matrix 29mm x 43mm