This wonderful pair of English early 19C saucer dishes (possibly Rathbone) are bat or transfer printed in puce with a Palladian country house set in a landscaped park with lake, swans, gazebo and courting couple wearing clothes typical of the period - everything it takes for an idyllic weekend in the country! Variations on the theme of the pastoral country house were popular in the early 1800's when large tea services of this type were made for the middle classes. The fine bone china is translucent and finished with three silver lustre lines to the rim. In the Spring 2004 edition of New Hall and Friends Newsletter, Alan Roberts compared unmarked specimens with patterns very similar to these saucers. He wrote, "Last year I found a tea set decorated with silver lustre lines and a puce batprint of a couple walking in their estate. The cups were in the Rathbone shape."
There are two saucers measuring 5.5"D x 1.25"H with sturdy foot rims 3.75"D. The condition of one saucer is good antique: minimal crazing and wear to print and luster, two faint and stable hairlines to rim (picture #6), no chips, cracks or restoration. The second saucer has issues and is being offered free: several old hairlines and firing flaws. (As this second saucer is free I have not photographed these faults.) Nevertheless they display beautifully as a pair. This piece came from an estate and some of the other pieces are shown in picture #8.
Silver lustre employed the metal platinum, whose chemical properties were analyzed towards the end of the 18C. Very dilute amounts of powdered platinum were dissolved in chemical substances and the mixture was applied to the glazed chinaware and fired in an enamelling kiln, depositing a thin film of platinum. Platinum produced the appearance of solid silver and was often sold in shapes used for silver tea services c.1810-1840. As gaslights became available to the wealthy, the fashion was to place groupings of lusterware on mirror platforms to be used as centerpieces for dinner parties, the lights accentuating not only the luster of the china but also the reflected social luster of the guests. (Sourced from Wikipedia)
PALLADIAN ARCHITECTURE is derived from the designs of Venetian architect Andrea Palladio (1508–1580). Palladio's work was strongly based on the symmetry, perspectives and values of the classical temple architecture of ancient Greece and Rome. Palladianism became popular briefly in Britain during the mid-17C and returned to fashion in the early 18C, not only in England but also in many other European countries. Later, when the style was falling from favour in Europe, it had a surge in popularity in North America, highlighted by examples such as Drayton Hall in South Carolina, the Redwood Library in Newport, Rhode Island, the Morris-Jumel Mansion in New York City and Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and Poplar Forest in Virginia. (Sourced from Wikipedia)
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