Important Silversmiths – Jean-Valentin Morel
A student of Adrien-Maximilian, maker of gold boxes to Louis XVI and Napoleon. In 1818 he started working independently and registered his first mark in August 1827 and later went to work with the Fossin brothers in 1834, remaining there until 1840. From 1842 - 1848 Morel was in partnership with the French architect Henri Duponchel (1794-1868) establishing themselves as Morel et Cie, where they became known for their renaissance revival objets d' art to the designs of Jules Peyre and Constant Sévin. At one point they employed 80 workers and won a gold medal at the Exposition des Produits de l'industrie of 1844 in Paris. However, their partnership ended acrimoniously in a lawsuit that resulted in Morel being prohibited from working in Paris again.
The revolutions of 1848 caused Morel to flee to London, he became established in New Burlington Street with financial backing from collector Edmond Joly de Bammeville. Registering his London mark in 1849, he continued to produce the highest quality silver and jewellery. At the Great Exhibition of 1851, he was awarded a Council Medal, showed a number of items at the Exhibition, notably including paperweights of various designs. Morel returned to France in 1852 and won the Grand Medaille for goldwork and jewellery at the Paris International Exhibition of 1855. There he exhibited his famous bloodstone and enamel cup depicting Perseus and Andromeda, commissioned by Henry Thomas Hope.