Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums Small Bells can anyone tell me anything about this bell

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    • #12514
      cadey06
      Participant

      can anyone tell me anything about this bell

    • #17937
      Garry
      Participant

      I see nobody has taken this one on, let me try and help.
      Can you provide some size measurements?
      Does a rare earth magnet stick to the bell?

      I’d like you to search this site for “Evangelist Bell” and have a look at the results.

      I think (and I caution my reply with; I am only going from what few details I think I can spot in the photos – I could be missing something!) that you are looking at a copy of an Evangelist Bell. The animals are attributed to specific apostles and you see this in many forms, small hand held swinging bells like the one you show (swung by hand gently in church) or on ornate door bell type arrangements or even in groups of 3 or 4. As this is a common bell design and covered quite well on this site, I won’t go into those details. They are easily found with the search engine.

      Yours shows very muffled definition of the designs over all, but no real ‘wear’ marks that I detect. This is a strong indicator that this is a copy of a copy type bell. Uncopied bells would have a crisp design on them. This is where someone made a mold of the original bell to pour a new one (which is never as crisp in design) and likely someone else made a copy of that copied bell to do another – causing further loss of design. I seem to see dark metal peeking through the gold color, so suspect you may have an iron bell that has been ‘painted’ with the bronze coloring. (which is why I am asking you to test with a magnet) Most of the bells were bronze made so a cheaper iron pour painted bronze is another indicator of a copied bell.

      Then I look at the bottom shot. a) no sign of the clapper having wear, b) no strong marks on the inside of the bell of the clapper striking it over a time, c) the thickness of the skirt is uneven, showing a poor mold, d) the chain is of a newer design. Again all strong indicators that this is a copied bell.

      The history of these types of bells are very interesting, and they have a range of uses. Hope that you enjoy the bell (especially if it rings nicely) and I would feel free to use it.

      Garry

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