World War I and World War II
Silver Presentation Honor Goblet,
Kaiser Wilhelm to Baron von Richthofen
Presented April 2, 1918…nineteen days before he was shot down and died
Measuring 16.5″ tall x 9″ wide, weighing 47 troy ounces, 800 fine silver
Extraordinary, important and rare, massive and historic, commissioned and presented by the
Kaiser himself to Baron von Richthofen just days before the Red Baron was killed in air combat;
created late in the war when sterling and gold was scarcely available in Germany.
Manfred von Richthofen (2 May 1892 - 21 April 1918) the “Red Baron”, a fighter pilot, the ace-
of-aces…officially credited with 80 air combat victories. Richthofen had become such a legend
that his death was a blow to the morale of the German people.
The enormous goblet bowl rests on the wings of a pair of Imperial eagles measuring just over 5″
from nose-to-nose; wing spans of nearly 5.5″; height of eagles: approximately 2.5”; height
overall: 16.5”, height of bowl: 9.5”; bowl diameter: 9 1/8”…the presentation shield area
measures 6.25” by 3.75”. The spreading circular base with a diameter of 8 3/8” measures nearly
7” in height at top of rockery.
The presentation reads “DEM RUHMBOLLEN KAMPFFHEGER / RITTMEIFTER FRIEHERR
VON RICHTHOFEN / KOMMANDEUR DES JAGDGEFCHNBADERS NR. 1 / FUR FEME
HERBOPPAGENDEN LEIFTUNGEN IM LUFTKAMPF / VON FEINEM DANKBAREN KAIFER
UND KOING / / WILHELM F.M. / GROKES HAUPTQUARTIER, DEN 2. UPRIL 1918″.
Translates to: “Our celebrated fighter pilot / Baron von Richthofen / Commander of the
Hunter-Fighter Squadron No. 1 / For his celebrated achievements in air combat / From his
most appreciated Kaiser and King / Wilhelm / Grand Headquarters April 2.1918”.
Von Richthofen celebrated his 80th confirmed kill and would himself be dead 19 days later,
killed by Allied ground fire. Richthofen was the greatest WWI ace of any country.
Richthofen had his fighter plane painted vibrant red; many pilots in his unit painted their planes
in bright colors with the unit becoming known as the “Flying Circus”. He received the premier
Pour le Merite Saxony’s Military Order of St. Henry award and numerous other awards.
This goblet is somewhat reminiscent of honor goblets presented to German WWI aces that
incorporated a flying eagle in their decoration, however, this trophy is much larger than a
traditional honor goblet and was very significant when presented to Richthofen. At the time of
manufacture, commodities of silver in Germany were at extraordinarily low levels; jewelers were
unable to obtain sterling silver, so this massive beaker was a great rarity at the end of WWI.
Very good overall condition; old polish, several small dings to bowl opposite presentation
commensurate with age and size; the trophy displays well with no distractions. Makers and
quality marks are discernible on bottom band of foot; 90% if not more of gold wash remains
intact within interior of bowl.
Please contact David Hillier for an indepth discussion on this fascinating piece of history!
email@example.com or (978)-597-8084
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