Saturday, 13 January 2018

Answer to the Quiz


I am fond of my antique nutmeg grater which considering it is over 200 years old is in lovely condition. The screw thread attaching the top to the  bottom works like a dream, and the little grater held in place by a circle of bone or ivory also screws perfectly into the base which in turn holds one whole nutmeg. I have contemplated who the first owner might have been and it is most likely to have been a Georgian gentleman. He would have carried it in his coat or waistcoat pocket on a daily basis so that he could freshly grate some nutmeg on top of his mulled wine or food. Nutmeg became a very desirable c17th ingredient consumed medicinally and also as a culinary delight. During the plague demand was at an all time high as it was believed to offer protection!
My small nutmeg grater was skillfully carved from a cocquilla nut being the fruit of a Brazilian palm - these small articles made from Cocquilla nuts and different hard woods are known in the antique trade as 'treen'.
Eight people answered that it was a nutmeg grater, and some also correctly knew that it was 200 years old and carved from a Cocquilla nut. In the order that they came in and well done to you all, but also thanks to everyone else who gave it a try:-
1. Jim - Road to Parnassus
2.Mary  - A Breath of Fresh Air 
3.Polly  - Olive and Pru
6. Annie - Back to Bodrum
7. Catherine - Kilmouski and Me 
8. Mariette -  Mariette's Back to Basics 

43 comments:

  1. Happy New Year, Rosemary. I missed your quiz as I was travelling, but what a beautiful little nutmeg grater you have, a real treasure. I must add that nutmeg is my absolute favourite spice!

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    1. Happy New Year to you too Patricia and pleased to know that you are now home safely from your long trip.
      Nutmeg is a big favourite of mine too Patricia, and I have a modern little grater which is always to hand in the kitchen.

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  2. Thank you for letting us know Rosemary. I don't think I can be counted as my first guess was way off. ;-)

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    1. Ah Catherine! but you did come up with the correct answer in the end due to your great research capacity, so well done.

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    2. It is a beautiful treasure, One I am sure you must be very fond of.

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  3. Dearest Rosemary,
    You may feel rightly so the very proud owner of this magnificent piece of ART!
    Happy for having guessed this right as well.
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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    1. Dear Mariette - it is lovely to own something that is so old but in such lovely condition. I guess all of the previous owners must have loved it as much as me.

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  4. Hello Rosemary, When visiting England I was always fascinated by the selection of "smalls" featured by many antique dealers--some obvious in their use, and some total mysteries. These treen acorns can be tricky--similar carved acorns were used for a variety of purposes, often to hold sewing notions, and some were even small etuis, managing to hold a variety of miniaturized implements.

    Your nutmeg grater is a superb one, with its beautiful finish and excellent condition.
    --Jim

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    1. Hello Jim - yes, there are a large variety of little treen pieces available over here and many of them are also made in silver too which are also very collectible and beautifully crafted too.

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  5. It's as beautiful and functional as the day it was first made -- the sign of true handcrafted quality!

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    1. I sometimes cannot believe just how old it is because of its perfection.

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  6. I adore nutmeg and use is a lot in cooking, such as cream of cauliflower soup, a bowl of which is so delicious on a cold winter day! Over the holidays my nutmeg grater - just an ordinary metal one - was used for eggnog. Your beautiful one, and in such great condition, is definitely a treasure Rosemary and worth a lot of money. I must keep my eyes open when in antique shops and look for one!

    Fun guessing game - I have a travel one coming up soon regarding our upcoming trip!
    Happy weekend - Mary

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    1. They are not easy to find Mary especially in perfect condition, quite a lot of them have splits or cracks. I bought mine from a lovely lady who specialises in treen and comes from Devon. She sells online and at fairs, but is very trust worthy. She will give an honest assessment of any object if emailed and asked. You might find it interesting to look at her website
      https://www.opusantiques.co.uk/
      I am in the middle of spring cleaning - awful, but I will feel great when I have finished, then I can give some thought to trips for 2018.

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  7. Such a beautiful tiny object! I wish you a happy weekend, Rosemary!

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    1. If you see one again then I am sure that you will recognise it.

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  9. This little nutmeg grater is gorgeous. I'm sure you treasure it.

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    1. I do indeed Shammickite - thanks for visiting.

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  10. Would not have guessed it if I hadn't seen something like it before in a friend's spice rack. They also had a plastic banana protector for keeping a banana un-squashed during bike rides. Never seen that before either. Same colour and shape as a real banana just slightly larger to clip around the fruit.

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    1. Sounds like quite a good idea for when you are out and about on a bike ride or hiking. For some strange reason your comment went into spam.

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  11. Love it , wish I were the proud owner !!

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  12. I would love one of these - I'd grate nutmeg on my morning coffee

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    1. I don't actually use it Annie, but I do have a contemporary one always to hand in the kitchen. Now I shall try a sprinkle of nutmeg in my coffee too thanks to you.

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  13. It's a beautiful little treasure. I like nutmeg. I enjoyed your quiz on my first of many visits to your blog.

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    1. Thank you, I shall look forward to future visits.

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  14. Dear Rosemary, I'm so glad you gave us this quiz. You have enriched my vocabulary and you have enriched my world.

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    1. Dear Gina - I am so delighted that you enjoyed learning about this little nutmeg grater♡

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  15. Amazing, how would have thought!
    Clever were the people back then, but I suppose 'things' were made for the times as they are made now for 'our time'.

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    1. I love this little antique Margaret.

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  16. I missed the quiz, but what a beautiful and functional piece of craftsmanship you have. I recently took an online course through Future Learn and the University of Reading about Royal Food and Feasting. They presented some fascinating information about nutmeg - even an amount as small as a teaspoon can cause hallucinations. Good thing it's so potent that we only need a little to spread about our recipes for flavour.

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    1. Hello Lorrie - I knew that nutmeg should only be used sparingly because of its hallucination properties, perhaps that is way they considered it to be medicinal during the c17th?

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  17. I always enjoy grating nutmeg, it must be even more special for you using this wonderful tool. Sarah x

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    1. I don't actually use it Sarah - i have a modern day grater in the kitchen.

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  18. Well done for guessing my post title!
    I love the grater by the way it's adorable

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    1. I remember those sticks of licquorice being in the sweets shops when I was a child - some people used to chew them, but I had no idea that they were actually roots either.

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  19. Yea! I did not guess aloud here, but I had some private guesses--all wrong. I did know about the high desirability of nutmeg though. So interesting! Thanks for the fun!!

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    1. Thank you for your comment - if you see one again then I am sure that you will reocognise it.

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