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Cup and saucer

Cup and saucer

  • Place of origin:

    Meissen (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1735-1740 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Meissen porcelain factory (manufacturer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Hard-paste porcelain, decorated with a brown ground and painted in underglaze blue enamels

  • Credit Line:

    From the Arthur and Hilde Weiner Collection. Accepted by HM Government in lieu of inheritance tax and allocated to the V&A, 2006

  • Museum number:

    C.68:1, 2-2006

  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 145, case 38, shelf 1 []

When coffee drinking was still a novelty in Europe tall cups and beakers were normally used for it, firstly made in metal (usually silver) and later on in porcelain and pottery. This shape of this Meissen coffee cup and saucer is quite rare as it has been specially adapted to enable the coffee to be poured into the saucer, presumably to allow the liquid to cool more quickly to a suitable temperature. The decoration imitates Chinese (Batavian ware) teacups and saucers.

The tradition of coffee drinking originated in Ethiopia and only spread to Europe during the 1600s via the Middle East.

Physical description

Pouring teabowl and drinking saucer of hard-paste porcelain with a lustrous brown ground and underglaze blue decoration in Chinese style.

Place of Origin

Meissen (made)


ca. 1735-1740 (made)


Meissen porcelain factory (manufacturer)

Materials and Techniques

Hard-paste porcelain, decorated with a brown ground and painted in underglaze blue enamels

Marks and inscriptions

Crossed swords and four dots
In underglaze blue

Object history note

Formerly in the Arthur and Hilde Weiner Collection.

Historical context note

The decoration imitates Chinese 'Batavian' wares.

Descriptive line

Coffee beaker and drinking saucer of porcelain with a lustrous brown ground, and painted inside in underglaze blue, Meissen porcelain factory, Germany, ca. 1735-40.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Cassidy-Geiger, Maureen, The Arnhold Collection of Meissen Porcelain, 1710-50, introduction by Henry Arnhold, essays by Biedermann, Heike, and Kuhn, Sebastian, London, Giles, 2008 for the Frick Collection and the Arnhold Foundation Inc. p. 324, no. 96. Catalogue of the exhibition of Henry Arnhold's Meissen collection, exhibited at the Frick Collection, New York, 25 March 29- June 2008. ISBN 978-1-904832-44-7
Sotheby's sale catalogue, Meissen Porcelain from a European Private Collection. London, 17th June, 1997, lot 44. Acquired by Henry Arnhold.





Subjects depicted

Boat; Fisherman; Trees; Buildings; Landscape


Ceramics; Porcelain


Ceramics Collection

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