The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Gobelot 'Calabre' et soucoupe of the first size
  • Cup and Saucer
  • Gobelot 'Calabre' et soucoupe of the first size
  • Manufacture de Vincennes
  • Tabary (born 1710), Painter
  • Vincennes, France
  • 1753
  • Soft-paste porcelain, painted and gilded
  • Cup, Height: 7.8 cm
    Saucer, Diameter: 14.4 cm
  • Factory mark: Interlaced Ls In underglaze blue
    Factory mark: Interlaced Ls enclosing 'A' the date letter for 1753 In underglaze blue
    Painter's mark: A diamond for Tabary In overglaze blue
    Inscription: 'hox' or 'roy' In black enamel
  • C360
  • Back State Room
Images & Media
Further Reading
  • The European cup for drinking tea evolved gradually during the first half of the eighteenth century, adapted from the Chinese porcelain tea bowls in which tea was originally drunk when it became fashionable in Europe at the end of the seventeenth century. By 1752, the Vincennes manufactory (the early name for Sèvres) was making a wide range of tea wares, many models of the early 1750s remaining in production for the rest of the century, like this one, the ‘gobelet Calabre’ which was introduced in 1752 and is still being produced today.
    The cup is fairly tall, tapers at the base and has a simple scroll handle. They were sold either as part of a ‘déjeuner’ of tray, cups, saucers (sometimes), milk jug and sugar bowl or in sets with matching saucers, milk jugs, sugar bowls and teapots. The deep saucer that was paired with it was probably used for cooling liquid from the cup, and as a drinking dish.

    Decorated with an dark blue 'bleu lapis' ground and painted with birds among flowers and shrubs, this cup and saucer are two of the earliest pieces of Vincennes porcelain in the Wallace Collection. The reserves are edged with elaborate gilded cartouches. In June 1754 the dealer Lazare Duvaux sold two cups and saucers of an unspecified model, decorated with a blue ground and birds, to Louis XV.