The Wallace Collection

The Wallace Collection, A Family Collection, A National Museum, An International Treasure House
  • Ewer
  • Unknown Artist / Maker
  • France and China
  • 1745 - 1749 (French mounts)
    1725 - 1735 (Chinese porcelain)
  • Porcelain and gilt bronze
  • Height: 29.8 cm
    Width: 14.5 cm
  • Stamp: Crowned 'C' Crowned 'C' 4mm in size
    Stamp: Crowned 'C' Crowned 'C' 4mm in size
  • F105
  • Small Drawing Room
Further Reading
  • A pair with F106. These Chinese objects have been transformed into fashionable French decorative art by the addition of gilt-bronze mounts. The two ewers were originally baluster-shaped vases of celadon porcelain but once they had been imported into France and a luxury goods retailer had commissioned mounts for them they were turned into ornamental ewers suitable for displaying on a chimneypiece or on top of a chest-of-drawers in a Parisian interior. Oriental porcelain was highly prized by wealthy collectors in eighteenth-century France and retailers could enhance the value even more by adding mounts like this. In this instance we can date the addition of the mounts quite accurately, because they have been struck with the crowned C mark that was imposed on gilt bronze sold in France between 1745–9. The style of the mounts, cast and chased with naturalistically detailed flowers, buds, bulrushes, shells and weed, is entirely consistent with the date suggested by their marks.