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Vase and cover
  • Vase and cover
    Allen, Thomas, born 1831 - died 1915
  • Enlarge image

Vase and cover

  • Place of origin:

    Stoke-on-Trent (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1855 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Allen, Thomas, born 1831 - died 1915 (painter (artist))
    Minton (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Bone china, with bleu celeste (light blue) ground, painted in enamels and gilded

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Ceramics, Room 139, The Curtain Foundation Gallery, case 18, shelf 5 []

Object Type
This vase was intended to be bought by an affluent collector who wished to demonstrate his wealth with the showy display of porcelain in the French Style, and perhaps also to support a superb, contemporary English manufacturer. The Sèvres porcelain factory's artistic director Alexandre Brongniart (1770-1847) had given Minton & Co. plaster casts from original moulds, which enabled them to make close copies of Sèvres wares. Mintons mastered the successful firing of an even ground (background) colour on their bone china, especially of bleu celeste (light blue), emerald green and 'Rose-du-Barry' (rosy) pink. This meant the company was able to make wares that were cleaner and crisper than Sèvres' own soft-paste porcelain. They also claimed their wares had 'whiteness and transparency...increased'.

Minton & Co.'s art director Léon Arnoux (1816-1902) joined the factory from France in 1849. He was deeply interested in the styles and techniques of historic French ceramics. French porcelain of the 18th century was collected by the rich and well-travelled such as the international banking family of the Rothschilds. Private collections such as theirs were studied by Mintons under Arnoux' direction. Presumably the Rothschilds gave permission for their name to be given to this Minton version of an 18th-century Sèvres vase triangulaire (a triangular vase of three bulbous parts attached to scrolled feet). It was probably painted by Thomas Allen (1831-1915), who trained at Stoke School of Art and the School of Design at Marlborough House, London, and specialised in painting in the French Style.

Physical description

Vase and cover in imitation of Sèvres porcelain; bone china with bleu celeste (light blue) ground, with medallions painted in enamels, and gilded. Triangular form, with strap-work ornament.

Place of Origin

Stoke-on-Trent (made)


ca. 1855 (made)


Allen, Thomas, born 1831 - died 1915 (painter (artist))
Minton (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Bone china, with bleu celeste (light blue) ground, painted in enamels and gilded


Height: 43 cm, Width: 23 cm, Depth: 23.2 cm

Object history note

Made by Minton & Co, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire; probably painted by Thomas Allen (born in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, 1831, died in 1915)

Descriptive line

Vase and cover, bone china, with bleu celeste (light blue) ground, painted in enamels and gilded; probably painted by Thomas Allen, manufactured by Minton & Co., Stoke-on-Trent, England, ca. 1855

Labels and date

British Galleries:
Mintons made this as a copy of a vase first produced at the French porcelain factory at Sèvres in 1761. They called it a 'Vase Rothschild Perforated'. Many members of the Rothschild family, highly successful bankers, collected French porcelain. By using their name, Mintons intended to suggest the high quality of this piece. [27/03/2003]


Bone china


Painted; Glazed; Gilded

Subjects depicted



Ceramics; Vases; Bone China


Ceramics Collection

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