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Label

At Martha Washington's invitation, French officers of General Rochambeau's army dined at Mount Vernon on July 20, 1782. The Comte de Custine de Sarreck, commander of the Saintonge regiment, sent ahead of his arrival a splendid tea and coffee service specifically made for the Washingtons at his Niderviller porcelain factory. The service's stunning array of gilded and enameled borders, each with its own pattern number painted on the pieces' undersides, suggests Custine intended it to advertise his wares to a new American market. Gifts of porcelain were common between the French aristocracy and Americans who traveled to Paris. The service Custine presented to the Washingtons is, however, the only known instance of 18th-century French porcelain crafted for an American recipient.

Description

Thrown, circular saucer with rounded sides on a raised circular foot. Decorated in overglaze polychrome enamels and gilt with "GW" monogram nestled in a golden-brown cloud surmounted by a chaplet or wreath of three pink roses at center of well. Chain border with two garlands of orange and gilded leaves suspended from rosettes. Gilded rim.

Date

1779-1782


People


Geography


Material/Technique

Porcelain (hard-paste), enamel, gilt


Dimensions

Overall (H x W x D): 1 1/8 in. × 5 1/8 in. × 5 1/8 in. (2.86 cm × 13.02 cm × 13.02 cm)


Credit Line

Gift of Colonel Robert Means Thompson, 1914


Marks

Overglaze mark painted on underside (in black): factory mark or cipher of intertwined Cs over "No. 49". Underglaze incised mark to right near foot: script "V".


Object Number

W-520/B


Colors (Beta)


Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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