A pair of early Derby porcelain figurines, mark dating to 1806 to 1825 period. Corpulent dwarfs have advertising on their hats. These figures are the originals, not the newer ones produced by Royal Crown Derby. The mark is a magenta hand painted mark, crown with crossed swords and dots, and D. One mark is very clear, the other has the paint worn, but it is still clearly visible. These figures are called Mansion House Dwarfs. They are actual historical figures: dwarfs who were employed to stand outside the Mansion House in London, wearing very large hats with advertisements. Man on the right of the photos: wears a hat advertising a Theater production of "Much Ado about Nothing" (Shakespeare). The actors are listed as "Benedict: Mr. Prettymann. Beatrice: Mrs. Prettymann". This man has a protruding belly, a distinguished mustache, colorful Punch like clothing. The reverse side shows a theatre set, with woman and chair on a stage. All beautifully hand painted with great details. Perfect condition, even his cane is in perfect condition. The figure on the left looks like a younger man, with protruding belly and colorful clothing. His exuberantly swooped hat reads: "Country House to be sold at auction". On the back of his shirt is a painting of the property. He holds an auctioneers hammer in his hand. Again, all hand painted, and in excellent condition. Both figures stand on the grassy ground, and both have exaggerated protruding bellies. Beautiful enamel paint colors to both. Special attention to detail on the faces, they are skillfully executed. Just a few flea bite size paint wear to the green grass on the bottom edge, just where the figures sit on the table, but no damages at all. This is amazing, as these figurines are 200 years old. From 1782 on, the Derby porcelains have hand painted marks. This particular mark dates 1806 to 1825. It was possibly designed to look like a Meissen mark. These are guaranteed to be of the period. Height of "Much Ado About Nothing" is 7.25 inches. Height of "Country House for Sale" is 6 and 7/8 inches.
If you collect antique Derby porcelain, these are excellent examples. No damages, no repairs. Sold as a pair.
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Derby Porcelain Mansion House Dwarfs Pair Advertising c. 1820