Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Ceramics, Room 139, The Curtain Foundation Gallery

Sweetmeat Dish

ca. 1780 (made)
Place of origin

Sweetmeat dish of tin-glazed hard-paste porcelain and the outside is moulded in the form of a leaf, and the stalk forms the handle.

Object details

Object type
Materials and techniques
Tin-glazed hard-paste porcelain and moulded
Brief description
Sweetmeat dish of tin-glazed hard-paste porcelain, Doccia porcelain factory, Doccia, ca.1780.
Physical description
Sweetmeat dish of tin-glazed hard-paste porcelain and the outside is moulded in the form of a leaf, and the stalk forms the handle.
  • Length: 8.9cm
  • Height: 4.1cm
Gallery label
Sweetmeat Dish Tin-glazed porcelain ITALY (DOCCIA); 1770-1780 Gift of Signora Ada Cardinale C.195-1927 (Label draft attributed to John V. G. Mallet, ca. 1995)(ca. 1995)
Credit line
Given by Signora Ada Cardinale
Subject depicted
Bibliographic reference
Frescobaldi Malenchini, Livia ed. With Balleri, Rita and Rucellai, Oliva, ‘Amici di Doccia Quaderni, Numero VII, 2013, The Victoria and Albert Museum Collection’, Edizioni Polistampa, Firenze, 2014 pp. 102-103, Cat. 87 87. Sherbet cup circa 1780 hard-paste porcelain with tin-glaze length 9 cm; width 6,5 cm no mark inv. C.195-1927 gift: Signora Ada Cardinale Bibliography: unpublished The three sherbet cups in the shape of a leaf with the stem as the handle are derived from a model produced at Dehua in the 17th century (AYERS 2002, p. 55, cat. 6; I wish to thank Francesco Morena for this information), at that time used as a paintbrush-washer. In Europe they were used as cups for hot beverages and later as sherbet cups. Two of the cups are decorated in the centre with a little bouquet usually called “al mazzetto” (see cat. 90). These sherbet cups were manufactured at Doccia from 1766 until the end of the 18th century (GINORI LISCI 1963, p. 76). There are two types: a rare one in the shape of shell (GINORI LISCI 1963, p. 89, fig. 62; P. Roseo, inCERAMICHE ITALIANE ED EUROPEE 1994, p. 128, cat. 176) and this one, in the shape of a leaf which could be either plain white or painted with colours. Almost all of the manufacturers in Europe produced these kinds of cups, for example, Du Paquier in Vienna (STURM-BEDNARCZYK 1994, p. 39, cat. 20), but the first ones were made at Meissen in 1711-1712 in red grès even before they were made in porcelain (BOLTZ 2000, p. 52, cat. 51; EBERLE, 2011, p. 63, cat. 50-52; I wish to thank Alessandro Biancalana and Andreina d’Agliano for this information). L.F.M.
Accession number

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Record createdJune 24, 2009
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