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  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1749 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Sprimont, Nicholas (modeller)
    Chelsea Porcelain factory (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Soft-paste porcelain

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, Room 53a, case 1

Object Type
This small sculpture of a retrieving setter with two dead partridges matches one of a greyhound with a dead hare. The pair were purely ornamental, and would probably have been displayed on a mantelpiece, in a glazed cabinet, or on another domestic furnishing. Their backs are comparatively uninteresting, so they were probably not intended to be seen from all sides.

The dogs were probably modelled by Nicholas Sprimont (1716-1771), the manager of the Chelsea porcelain factory. Sprimont is a rare instance of an English porcelain entrepreneur with design skills. A visitor to England around 1750 commented that 'an able French artist' supplied 'or directs the models' of everything made at Chelsea (Sprimont wasn't actually French, but was from a French-speaking part of Flanders). According to his widow, Sprimont had 'by his superior skill and taste in the arts of drawing and modelling and painting instructed and perfected several apprentices, workmen and servants'. He was also a gifted designer of silver, in which craft he had worked before setting up the Chelsea factory.

Physical description

FIGURE of a retrieving setter

Place of Origin

London (made)


ca. 1749 (made)


Sprimont, Nicholas (modeller)
Chelsea Porcelain factory (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Soft-paste porcelain


Height: 13.4 cm, Width: 19.6 cm, Depth: 8.4 cm

Object history note

Possibly modelled by Nicholas Sprimont (1716-1771),
made at the Chelsea porcelain factory, London

Descriptive line

Figure of a dog, soft-paste porcelain, possibly modelled by Nicholas Sprimont, made at the Chelsea porcelain factory, London, c. 1749

Labels and date

British Galleries: The dogs were possibly modelled by Nicholas Sprimont, the manager of the Chelsea factory. Sprimont is known to have been a skilful designer and modeller and to have taught his apprentices to model and draw. In this respect he was unusual among the managerial staff at the English factories. [27/03/2003]

Subjects depicted

Bird; Dog


Ceramics; Porcelain; British Galleries


Ceramics Collection

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