This beautiful and rare soft paste porcelain tea cup and saucer with the "London" handle is in pristine condition. There are no chips, no cracks, no crazing, and no repairs. Both pieces ring when tapped.
It was made by the S. & J. Rathbone firm of Tunstall, Staffordshire. This particular pattern is pictured on page 139 of Howard Davis' book "Chinoiserie: Polychrome Decoration on Staffordshire Porcelain".
Davis writes: "The style of decoration is characterized by well drawn bold designs...using deep, vivid enamel colors, which can be regarded as a "trademark" of the factory".
The "Tea-house" cup and saucer which he shows are marked only on the saucer with the pattern number 508, the same as this set. He knew of a matching bowl with the factory mark of "the "R" in a sunburst". The S. & J. Rathbone company operated from 1812 to 1835. Information about this company is so recent that it is not mentioned in Godden's marks book.
The cup is 6 cm (2-3/8") high, the saucer diameter is 14.2 cm (5-5/8").
Note: I have a second, matching Rathbone cup & saucer, also for sale on Ruby Lane; and another cup and saucer in the "Tea House" pattern, which is by an unknown maker, and marked with a pseudo-Chinese mark.
Specialist in Early 19th Century English Porcelain Tea Wares
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