The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
Possibly gobelet 'couvert' of the first size and soucoupe 'Bouillard' of the first size
  • Covered Cup and Saucer
  • Possibly gobelet 'couvert' of the first size and soucoupe 'Bouillard' of the first size
  • Manufacture de Sèvres
  • Jean-Louis Morin (1732 - 1787), Painter
  • Sèvres, France
  • 1759 (with later decoration)
  • Soft-paste porcelain, painted and gilded
  • Cup with cover, Height: 9.5 cm
    Cup without cover, Height: 7 cm
    Saucer, Diameter: 13.5 cm
  • Factory mark: Interlaced Ls enclosing 'g' the date letter for 1759-1760
    Painter's mark: 'M' for Jean-Louis Morin
    Incised mark: 'CS'
    Incised mark: 'OO'
    Incised mark: 'I'
  • C367
  • Reserve Vault 2
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 many years, like this one, the ‘gobelet couvert et soucoupe’, of which examples are known from 1753 until c. 1780.

    The straight-sided cup, indented at the base, was made with and without handles, often with a slightly domed cover with a flower knop. It was combined with two different styles of saucers: either ‘litron’, with a deep, sloping side (see museum numbers C345-56), or ‘Bouillard’, a plain shallow bowl (museum numbers C357-9). Gobelets couvertes were included in déjeuners (that is, with a tray) or were sold with a sugar bowl or teapot. They were also used for coffee drinking. The cover kept the contents of the cup warm.

    This example is decorated with rose and green ground colours forming scroll patterns, and painted with herubs and flowers. The ground colours and gilding may well have been added later: the cherubs have unusual brownish flesh colours, perhaps as a result of re-firing, and the ‘sticky’ quality of the gilding is also associated with pieces redecorated in the nineteenth century.