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Teacup and saucer
  • Teacup and saucer
    Häuer, Bonaventura Gottlieb, born 1710 - died 1782
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Teacup and saucer

  • Place of origin:

    Meissen (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1739-1740 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Häuer, Bonaventura Gottlieb, born 1710 - died 1782 (painter)
    Meissen porcelain factory (manufacturer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Hard-paste porcelain, painted in enamels and gilt

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 139, The Curtain Foundation Gallery, case 22, shelf 8 []

Physical description

Teacup and saucer of hard-paste porcelain. The cup painted with a continuous harbour scene and the arms of Mocenigo-Cornaro families above a double red line, inside a harbour scene in purple camaieu. The saucer with a harbour scene with elegant figures and the same arms. Bands of gold lace and lattice inside rims.

Place of Origin

Meissen (made)


ca. 1739-1740 (made)


Häuer, Bonaventura Gottlieb, born 1710 - died 1782 (painter)
Meissen porcelain factory (manufacturer)

Materials and Techniques

Hard-paste porcelain, painted in enamels and gilt

Marks and inscriptions

Crossed swords
Factory mark, in underglaze blue

Two stars
Unidentified throwers mark, impressed

In gold

Object history note

Formerly Lord Lichfield Collection.

Historical context note

The service was made to the order of Augustus III, Elector of Saxony, for Alvise IV Giovanni Mocenigo and to his wife Madame Pisana Mocenigo in recognition of their help and hospitality to. Friedrich Christian, the young Crown Prince of Saxony, on his visit to Italy in 1739-40.

Information about the service comes from letters written by Joseph Gabaleon, Count Wackerbarth-Salmour to Count Brühl, Prime Minister of Saxony and Director of the Meissen factory (written in French and preserved in the Sächisches Hauptstaatsarchiv, Dresden). Count Wackerbarth-Salmour accompanied Friedrich Christian, the young Crown Prince of Saxony, on his visit to Italy in 1739-40. It is clear from the letters that the Prince intended to make gifts of Meissen porcelain to both Alvise IV Giovanni Mocenigo – then Venetian Ambassador to Naples and one of the four nobles who were assigned to accompany the Prince during his stay in Venice – and to his wife Madame Pisana Mocenigo. Although the Prince did not stay with the Mocenigos in Venice, Alvise was his principal chaperone in the city. (There were also earlier family ties, as Augustus III had stayed with the Mocenigos when on the Grand Tour in 1713 and 1716.) It is evident that the gifts of Meissen porcelain were to be presented by the Crown Prince himself, as letters record his anxiety that the items should arrive before he left Italy for Austria in June 1740, and they record also that he made interim gifts to both husband and wife, apologising that the porcelain had not yet arrived.

A letter of 11 February 1740 discusses the present to be given to Madame Pisana, and in another, dated 25 March of the same year, Count Wackerbarth-Salmour sent designs of the Mocenigo and Cornaro arms for use on a service of porcelain to be made for her as a present from Augustus III. This was a large tea, coffee and chocolate service decorated with battle scenes and other subjects. Each piece bears the accollé Mocenigo-Cornaro arms, and the armorials on this cup and saucer identify it as being from this service. Most of the service was sold Christie’s, 8 July 2002, lot 261. Four pieces are signed by the Meissen enameller Bonaventura Gottlieb Häuer (1710-82). (See H.E. Backer, ‘Ein Meissen Wappenservice von Bonaventura Gottlieb Häuer, Freunde der Schweizer Keramik, no. 13, July 1949, pp. 11-12.)

A further letter, dated 18 May 1740, states that both Alvise and Madame Pisana were to receive gifts of porcelain. This was almost certainly a garniture of vases, as three vases decorated by the same hand and with the same armorials together with the ‘AR’ mark (used to indicate that the item was intended as a royal gift or for the Elector of Saxony’s personal use) are recorded.

See Maureen Cassidy-Geiger, Fragile Diplomacy: Meissen Porcelain for European Courts in the Eighteenth Century (2008), and Maureen Cassidy-Geiger, ‘“Je reçus le Soir le monde marqué”: A Crown Prince of Saxony in Italy, 1738-1740’, Handbook to the International Fine Art & Antique Dealers Show, New York (2004)

Descriptive line

Teacup and saucer, hard-paste porcelain, painted in enamels and gilt, made by the Meissen porcelain factory, Germany, ca. 1739-40

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

Backer, H. E. "Ein Meissener Wappenservice von B. G. Häuer", in Freunde der Schweizer Keramik, Mitteilungsblatt, 13 (July 1949), pp. 11-12.

Production Note

Attribution from the manuscript catalogue dates from about 1970 and was compiled by William Hutton of the Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio.


Hard paste porcelain


Painted; Gilt

Subjects depicted

Harbours; Lace pattern; Coats of arms; Lattices


Porcelain; Ceramics


Ceramics Collection

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