Spoons formerly given at christenings; so called because one of
the apostles figured at the top of the handle. Sometimes twelve spoons,
representing the twelve apostles; sometimes four, representing the four
evangelists; and sometimes only one, was presented. Sometimes, but very
rarely, a set occurs containing in addition the “Master Spoon” and the
“Lady Spoon.” We still give at christenings a silver spoon, though the
apostolic handle is no longer retained.
Source: Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, E. Cobham Brewer, 1894
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