A really handsome and unusual Chinese export porcelain part teaset, made for the American market, hand-painted en grisaille with gilt details. The decoration finely rendered depicting an ‘Altar of Hymen’ surmounted by a classical urn and swags inscribed with the gilded initials JB. To the left in the background, floats a ship flying an American flag, the ship’s name ARAB proudly emblazoned across the stern. To the right of the altar is a maritime shield with an anchor upon which is perched a pair of lovebirds and beneath the shield the gilded initials LB. Surely this was a special order service, certainly from the ship’s captain and most likely some sort of commemorative for a marriage with the Altar of Hymen and lovebird themes being incorporated into the design. The ship ARAB was registered in 1806 in Salem, MA and was captained by one John Barton (1774-1818) who as a shipowner, shipmaster, and merchant became wealthy trading with Europe, South America and the East and West Indies. For a virtually similar piece see our Item #7345, a tankard, which does not have the inscribed ship’s name or lovers’ initials, so, interestingly this was a stock pattern which could be ‘specialized’. Circa 1810. PIECES PRICED INDIVIDUALLY: Teapot, sugar bowl, berry dish, teabowls, handled cups and saucers available. TEAPOT SOLD, teabowl/saucer – $750. , berry bowl – $450., sugar- $250.
We are grateful to our friends Sandra and Charles Cluthe for their research on these pieces.