(b Lille, c. 1664; bur London, 21 May 1719). English goldsmith of French birth. A Huguenot, he probably trained as a goldsmith in France before fleeing to the in 1685 after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. In 1688 he arrived in England in the train of William III, and in 1697 he was naturalized. In 1699 he obtained the freedom of the Goldsmiths’ Company, London, by redemption (i.e. purchase) and entered his first mark in June of that year; his workshop was located in Pall Mall. He became one of the leading Huguenot goldsmiths in London in the first decade of the 18th century, producing domestic gold- and silverwork often decorated with elaborate Régence ornament. His most important works include a magnificent gold ewer and basin (1701; Chatsworth, Derbys); the ewer is helmet-shaped with a scrolled, figural handle, and the rim of the basin has fine, cast shellwork ornament. The basin is engraved with the arms of William Cavendish, 4th Earl and 1st Duke of Devonshire, who patronized other Huguenot goldsmiths. Platel's elegant two-handled cup and cover (1705; Oxford, Ashmolean), with cast and applied leaves and lambrequins overlaid with husk and guilloche ornament, is characteristic of the increasingly elaborate Huguenot gold- and silverwork of the period 1700 to 1710. Paul de Lamerie, who became one of the most notable silversmiths working in the Rococo style, was apprenticed to Platel from 1703 to 1711 and continued working for him as a journeyman until 1713. The tray, pounce-pot and inkpot of an inkstand (1711-20; Williamstown, MA, Clark A. Inst.) have the mark of Platel, while the central pot, possibly a replacement, has de Lamerie's mark.
From The Grove Encyclopedia of Decorative Arts in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Decorative Arts, Furniture, and Industrial Design.