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A magnificent Meissen circular dish, circa 1735

Superbly painted with a chinoiserie scene on a three-tier pedestal depicting figures flanked by flower vases on stands and small tables, the elaborate gilt pedestal with seeded and trellis panels filled with Böttger lustre enclosing three quatrelobe purple monochrome landscape panels and edged with foliate scrollwork, the rim with four Kauffahrtei scenes of merchants and their wares by a quayside in a gilt frame with tooled scrollwork, flanked by gilt trellis panels filled with Böttger lustre enclosing reserves with foliate scrollwork and a purple flower vase on a pedestal, 28.9cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, impressed V inside footrim - Estimate: £40,000 - 60,000

Provenance: Sold, Hôtel Drouot, Paris (Paul Pescheteau et Chantal Pescheteau-Badin), 5 February 1981;
Acquired in 1990

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 66

Exhibition: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

Six smaller dishes of this type (around 22cm diam.) belonging to Miss H. Agyropoulo, were sold in pairs by Christies London, 12 May 1927, lots 37-39. They were not illustrated in the catalogue, but are most likely to include at least some of the following examples: two smaller dishes of this type (22.4cm diam.) are in the Rijksmuseum (Den Blaauwen 2000, no. 89); another (22.7cm diam.) is in the Dr. Ernst Schneider collection, Schloss Lustheim (Schommers / Grigat-Hunger 2004, no. 32); one was in the von Dallwitz Collection, Berlin, by 1904 (destroyed in 1945, published in Brüning 1904, no. 166, pl. IX); others are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (Cassidy-Geiger 1996b, fig. 13), the Badisches Landesmuseum, Karlsuhe, and the Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg. Another dish (22.9cm diam.), formerly in the collections of Dr. Albert Kocher, Bern, and Dr. Paul Schnyder von Wartensee, Luzern, was sold from a Swiss private collection by Christie's London, 8 July 2002, lot 29.

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A very rare Meissen circular stand, circa 1725

Painted with four panels around the rim with alternating chinoiserie and European landscape scenes, each within a gilt cartouche with scrollwork and dots and filled with Böttger lustre, against a band of gilt arched panels, a trellis-ground alternating with gilt foliage on Böttger lustre, the well painted with indianische Blumen hung from a border of gilt foliate scrollwork and two insects in the centre, the reverse with three branches of indianische Blumen, 21.6cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue - Estimate: £40,000 - 60,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1989

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 59

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A very rare Meissen circular stand, circa 1725-30

Painted with three shaped chinoiserie panels around the rim, enclosed by a broad band of gilt foliate scrollwork with panels of Böttger lustre, with pendant swags of indianische Blumen in the well and a single flower sprig in the centre, the reverse with three trailing branches of indianische Blumen, 25.9cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue - Estimate: £40,000 - 50,000

Provenance: Anon. sale, Sotheby's London, 14 June 1983, lot 127
Acquired in 1985

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 56

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

A closely similar stand was sold at Sotheby's London, 14 June 1983, lot 126.

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A very rare Meissen circular stand, circa 1730

Painted in the centre with a circular medallion of dense foliage and five flower-heads reserved against the iron-red ground, enclosed by a band of gilt foliate strapwork and flowers enclosing Böttger lustre, the rim with four shaped chinoiserie panels within gilt and Böttger lustre cartouches, flanked by iron-red and purple scrollwork and gilt floral panels, the reverse with three sprigs of trailing indianische Blumen, 25.8cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue - Estimate: £30,000 - 50,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1990

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 53

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A very rare Meissen armorial two-handled beaker and saucer from the service for the Elector Clemens August of Cologne, dated 1735

Each superbly painted with a chinoiserie scene on a gilt scrollwork bracket filled with Böttger lustre and enclosing a quatrelobe purple monochrome estuary scene, the saucer with two figures and a child holding the gilt CA monogram, the beaker with a figure and two children by a notice on a tree inscribed 'Clement/ August/ 1735', the reverse of the saucer with the Elector's Coat-of-Arms, gilt scrollwork borders to rims, the beaker: 6.7cm high, the saucer: 12.8cm diam., crossed swords marks in underglaze-blue, impressed (unidentified) Dreher's mark of an asterisk (2) - Estimate: £35,000 - 50,000

Provenance: Probably ordered by the Elector Clemens August of Cologne in 1735;
Recorded in February, 1761, in the Indianisches Haus in Brühl, and moved to Bonn the same year;
Purchased at the auction of the late Elector's possessions at the Bonn Residence by Hofrat Vogel in the name of Herr von Derme in March 1764;
Anon. sale, Christie's Geneva, 16 November 1992, lot 350;
Acquired in the above sale

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, II, no. 311;
Iwe 2005, pp. 30 and 43;
Unterberg 2005, p. 61, ills. 12 and 13

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

This beaker and saucer bear the coat of arms of Clemens August of Bavaria, Elector of Cologne (1700-1761). Born in Brussels, he was the fourth son of Elector Maximilian II Emanuel of Bavaria and Teresa Kunegunda Sobieska, and the grandson of King Jan III Sobieski of Poland. Following his theological studies, Clemens August became a priest in 1725 and was made a bishop by Pope Benedict XIII in 1727. By virtue of his birth, he had already become Bishop of Münster and Paderborn in 1719, and in 1723, he became Archbishop and Elector of Cologne and was elected Bishop of Hildesheim the following year. In 1728, he was elected Bishop of Osnabrück, and in 1732, he was elected Grand Master of the Teutonic Order. He thus accrued enormous power and wealth in both the religious and secular spheres, and is renowned to this day for his patronage of the arts, his elegant court, and his magnificent castles, such as Augustusburg and Falkenlust in Brühl, and Clemenswerth near Osnabrück.

The celebrated tea, coffee and chocolate service of which this beaker and saucer formed a part, has recently been the subject of detailed studies by Thomas Iwe and Michael Unterberg (see Literature), and has also been considered in the context of diplomacy between the courts in Dresden and Cologne (Köhler 2007), on which the following note is mostly based.

The Saxon ambassador at the electoral Court in Cologne, Heinrich Balduin von Schenk, reported in the late 1720s that Clemens August held Meissen porcelain in high regard, and suggested at least twice that Augustus the Strong should make him a gift of porcelain (Köhler 2007, pp. 200-201). Despite this, it appears that this magnificent service, with its unique and highly personal scheme of chinoiserie figures paying homage to Clemens August, was most likely commissioned by the Elector, rather than a gift from the Dresden Court, with which relations were then strained. The inventory made after the Elector's death in 1761, records that the service was housed in the Indianisches Haus, a chinoiserie house in the park of Schloss Augustusburg, the third in Europe after Augustus the Strong's Japanese Palace and Schloss Pillnitz. The informal atmosphere that prevailed there may have been appropriate to the service, the decoration of which may also be read as a caricature of court ceremonial (Köhler, op. cit., p. 202).

The service originally included twelve such beakers and saucers; for a comprehensive description of the service, and the current whereabouts of the pieces, see above Literature. Another double-handled beaker and saucer from this service, previously sold at Sotheby's London, 29 June 1982, was sold at Christie's London, 11 December 2007, lot 105.

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An important Meissen circular stand, circa 1725-30

Superbly painted in enamels and Böttger lustre with a central scene of a chinoiserie figure flanked by flowering indianische Blumen and rockwork enclosed by iron-red circles and a broad band of gilt foliate scrollwork, the rim with four gilt-edged quatrelobe chinoiserie cartouches edged with Böttger lustre and iron-red scrollwork, separated by gilt foliate scrollwork, the reverse with trailing indianische Blumen and butterflies, 22.2cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue - Estimate: £30,000 - 40,000

Provenance: Anon. sale, Sotheby's London, 16 June 1987, lot 97;
Acquired in the above sale

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 50;
Lübke 2008, pp.10-16

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

This circular stand is notable not only for the exceptional quality of the chinoiserie painting, but also for the intriguing 'HO' monogram painted in iron-red on the reverse above the crossed swords. See Dieter Hoffmeister's discussion of the piece (Hoffmeister 1999, I, pp. 96-97), including the theory first advanced by Dr. Ingelore Menzhausen, that the monogram could be read 'JCHO' for the painter, Johann Christoph Horn, who was active at the manufactory from 1720. The acquisition of this and a similar stand with the same mark (Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 49) led to the discovery of the matching tureens and covers, both marked with the same monogram. One, from the collection of the 19th-century Dresden collector, Carl Spitzner, is in the Dresden porcelain collection in the Zwinger (Inv. nr. PE 1504, illustrated by Pietsch 1996, no. 134, and Lübke 2008, ill. 9), and the other is in the Giuseppe Gianetti Collection in Saronno, which was formed in the 1930s and 1940s (Bruni / Molfino 1994, no. 59).

Diethard Lübke has recently discussed the tureens and stands in detail (see Literature), including the monogram. He argues (pp. 10-16) against the idea that HO is a painter's signature, not least because several hands including the gilder's are involved, and suggests that the monogram signifies that the tureens and their stands were prizes awarded during the Dresden carnival season. If the monogram is read not as 'H' and 'O', but as representing the zodiac sign of Pisces and the sun, respectively, the 'monogram' can be seen as emblematic of the sun in the constellation of Pisces, that is between 20-21 February and the 20th March, which is when the Dresden carnival took place. In this reading, the sun can also stand for Augustus the Strong, presumably the donor of the prize. Lübke also cites the example of Vienna, where prizes such as porcelain tureens and stands were regularly awarded in shooting contests, and were considered worthy of the Empress herself.

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A very rare Meissen dish, circa 1735

The well painted with four chinoiserie vignettes, each on a gilt and Böttger lustre bracket flanked by iron-red and purple scrollwork, all within a gilt trellis-ground band, the rim with four gilt-edged quatrelobe cartouches painted with Kauffahrtei scenes of merchants and their wares by a quayside, against a band of foliate scrollwork embellished with Böttger lustre, the reverse with scattered indianische Blumen, 18.5cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, impressed Dreher's mark above an incised line - Estimate: £20,000 - 30,000

Provenance:  Anon. sale, Sotheby's London, 12 June 1984, lot 131 (one of two)

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 62

Exhibition: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

Only two plates of this type of this small size are recorded: another in the Hoffmeister Collection (Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 63), and one sold by Doyle's New York, 19th October 1983, lot 283. A plate with the same decoration of a larger size (28cm diam.) was sold at Christie's London, An Important Swiss Collection of European Porcelain, 21 February 2005 lot 44, and another slightly bigger one (21.5cm diam.) was sold at Christie's London from the collection of the late Max Hoffmann, 21 November 2005, lot 216.

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A very rare Meissen beaker and saucer, circa 1723 © 2002-2009 Bonhams 1793 Ltd

The slender, flared beaker painted in iron-red camaieu, probably by J.G. Höroldt, with a large chinoisere figure on both sides, flanked by flowering plants and with insects and a bird overhead, the saucer similarly decorated with a circular scene depicting a figure holding a banner, concentric double-line borders, the beaker: 7.9cm high (2) Estimate: £15,000 - 20,000

Provenance: The Property of a Lady, Christies London, 28 June 1976, lots 139 (beaker) and 141 (saucer);
Acquired in 1993

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 13

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

From a very rare, early service painted in iron-red, of which the teapot, slop bowl, three beakers and saucers and three teabowls and saucers were sold by Christie's London, 28 June 1976, lots 138-143, and two other beakers and saucers were sold by Sotheby's London, 7 November 1972, lots 145 and 146. An additional teabowl was sold at Christie's London, 5 July 2004, lot 13. Höroldt is recorded as having decorated a service in red as early as 1720 (Pietsch 1996, p. 38), though the present example can be dated to around 1723 because the teapot bears the K.P.M. mark. Several pieces from the service were exhibited in Dresden in 1996 (Pietsch 1996, nos. 7-12), when the decoration was attributed in part to Höroldt himself. A beaker and saucer and a teabowl and saucer are in the Carabelli Collection (Pietsch 2000, nos. 2-3) and the slop bowl is in the collection of Jeffrey Tate and Klaus Kuhlemann, London. Another beaker and saucer from the service is in the Arnhold Collection, New York (Cassidy-Geiger 2008, no. 74).

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A very rare Meissen yellow-ground plate, circa 1740

Reserved with a purple-edged, shaped quatrelobe cartouche painted with 'contour' chinoiserie figures, one holding a parasol and the other a scroll, in a landscape vignette with flowering indianische Blumen, brown-edged rim, 22.5cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, impressed 9 or 6 - Estimate: £10,000 - 15,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1989

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, II, no. 270

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

The two figures are copied from a detail of an engraving by Petrus Schenk jun. (1698-1775), no. 18 from the series Nieuwe geinventeerde Sineesen (published by Den Blaauwen 1966, p. 14), which was known in Meissen in the 1720s, but was not widely copied until the late 1730s (Den Blaauwen 2000, p. 259). The same print was used as a source for a scene on one of a pair of yellow-ground vases in the porcelain collection in Dresden, and on a pair of purple-ground vases in the Nationalmuseum, Stockholm (published by Den Blaauwen 1966, ills. 16 and 17). For a discussion of this style of chinoiserie decoration, known as 'contour' chinoiseries, see Den Blaauwen 2000, p. 259. Although the style is associated with the painter Adam Friedrich von Löwenfinck, other artists at Meissen also painted in this style and Löwenfinck is not known to have used the Schenk prints as a source. A similar plate, the only other recorded of this type, was sold by Stahl Hamburg, 13 September 2008, lot 635.

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A Meissen beaker and saucer, circa 1725-30

The beaker painted with two chinoiserie scenes, each within a lobed gilt quatrelobe cartouche filled with Böttger lustre and embellished with iron-red and purple scrollwork, the sides joined by a purple monochrome chinoiserie vignette of a figure, enclosed by swags and foliate scrollwork, the saucer with a similar polychrome cartouche embellished with foliate and scrollwork swags, gilt scrollwork borders to rims, the saucer with three concentric iron-red circles, the beaker: 7.7cm high; the saucer: 13.6cm diam. crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue to beaker, gilt numeral 11. to both, incised / inside footrim of saucer (2) Estimate: £8,000 - 12,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1990

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 33

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A Meissen teabowl and saucer, circa 1730

Painted with Kauffahrtei scenes of merchants and their wares by a quayside, within an elaborate gilt cartouche filled in Böttger lustre, iron-red and purple and embellished with iron-red and purple scrollwork, the cartouche on the saucer surmounted by a purple chinoiserie vignette and hung with a fruit swag at the base, gilt scrollwork borders to rims, a spray of indianische Blumen to the inside of the teabowl, teabowl: 4.3cm high; saucer: 12.1cm diam., crossed swords marks in underglaze-blue, gilt numeral 72. to both, incised / inside each footrim, inventory no. G.28222 in blue enamel to both (2) - Estimate: £3,000 - 5,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1991

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 76

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A Meissen saucer, circa 1725

Painted with a chinoiserie scene depicting a man seated by a table holding a zither on his lap, within a quatrelobe gilt scrollwork cartouche with Böttger lustre and iron-red scrollwork, gilt scrollwork border, three iron-red circles to reverse, 12.4cm diam., incised x inside footrim, Estimate: £2,000 - 3,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1984

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 16

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

The seated figure with the zither appears in the Schulz Codex (pl. 111).

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A Meissen saucer, circa 1725

Painted with a chinoiserie scene depicting a figure seated with a fruit basket and another kneeling figure offering a basket, a fence and flowering plants in the background, within a gilt quatrelobe scrollwork cartouche with Böttger lustre and iron-red scrollwork, gilt scrollwork border, three iron-red circles to reverse, 12.6cm diam. 2. or z. in gold, incised / inside footrim, Estimate: £2,000 - 3,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1984

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 25

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A Meissen Hausmaler saucer, circa 1725-30

Decorated in Augsburg, probably by Elisabeth Wald, with a chinoiserie scene depicting two figures by a fountain, within a gilt scrollwork cartouche, gilt foliate scrollwork border to rim, 12.3cm diam. Estimate: £2,000 - 3,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1984

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 248

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

Similarly decorated examples attributed to Elisabeth Wald are illustrated by Ducret 1971, I, ills. 354-355.

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A Meissen saucer, circa 1730

Painted with a chinoiserie scene depicting a large figure wearing a fur hat and holding a stick with a bell and basket, and another, smaller figure with smoking vessels on a high table to one side, within an elaborate gilt scrollwork cartouche filled with Böttger lustre and purple and iron-red patterns, embellished with iron-red and purple scrollwork, gilt scrollwork border to rim, three iron-red circles to reverse, 12.1cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, gilt numeral 73, incised / inside footrim - Estimate: £2,000 - 3,000

Provenance: Acquired in 1981

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 34

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A Meissen saucer, circa 1740

Painted with a chinoiserie scene depicting a figure seated by a boiling kettle on a stand, and another holding a banner and long staff hung with objects, within concentric iron-red circles, gilt border of alternating trellis panels to rim, 13cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, gilt numeral 48., impressed 2 inside footrim - Estimate: £1,500 - 2,500

Provenance: Acquired in 1988

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 37

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A rare Meissen saucer, circa 1732

Painted in the manner of J.E. Stadler with a chinoiserie figure holding a fan flanked by flowering plants, within three concentric underglaze-blue circles, three sprigs of indianische Blumen and a trellis border reserved with chrysanthemums to the rim, the reverse with three flower sprigs, 13.1cm diam., crossed swords mark in underglaze-blue, impressed Dreher's mark of Johann Christoph Pietzsch Senior - Estimate: £1,500 - 2,000

Provenance: Anon. sale, Sotheby's London, 27 November 1979, lot 42

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 44

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

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A Meissen saucer, circa 1725-30

Finely painted with a European landscape scene including figures by an urn on a plinth and a windmill, within a gilt quatrelobe cartouche with Böttger lustre, embellished with iron-red and purple scrollwork and tiny chinoiserie vignettes, the rim with a gilt scrollwork border, 14cm diam., crossed swords mark in blue enamel, gilt numeral 4., incised / inside footrim - Estimate: £800 - 1,200

Provenance: Acquired in 1981

Literature: Hoffmeister 1999, I, no. 70

Exhibited: Hamburg, Museum für Kunst und Gewerbe, 1999-2009

Bonhams. The Hoffmeister Collection of Meissen Porcelain Part 1, 25 Nov 2009. New Bond Street www.bonhams.com Copyright © 2002-2009 Bonhams 1793 Ltd