Since the 1890s, Los Angeles has literally and figuratively been built upon acres of ancient oil deposits deep beneath its shifting surface. More»
This is called a sauceboat.
Well, this is actually two pieces. A sauceboat (lined in gilt silver) and a flowing leafy stand.
In the 1700s, strict eating rituals known as service à la française and the rise in popularity of soups and stews meant that intricate designs for liquid-holding vessels such as this were in demand.