This four piece tea and coffee set was made by Paul Storr (1771-1844), one of the most important silversmiths of the late 18th and early 19th centuries who was renowned for his work in the neo-classical style. Each piece in the set is engraved with the Arms of Sackville Tufton, 9th Earl of Thanet (1769-1825). Though Thanet was not actively involved in politics, he was present, along with other Whig sympathisers, at the trial of Arthur O’Connor, who was involved in the Irish Republican movement. O’Connor was found not guilty, but was immediately rearrested on another charge. Thanet and others were charged with having created a riot in the court and having put out the lights in an attempt to rescue the prisoner, or at least facilitate his escape. Thanet was convicted of riot and assault, and on 10 June 1799 he was sentenced to a year’s imprisonment in the Tower and a fine of 1000 pounds. The Earls of Thanet were prolific consumers of silver in the 18th and 19th centuries, shown perhaps most famously in the extensive service made for Sackville Tufton, 7th Earl of Thanet by Paul de Lamerie, mostly in 1748.