Rare square Spoon Tray, Worcester, soft paste porcelain, c.1758


Although sometimes referred to as a teapot stand, this lobed square form with shallow sides is more likely to have been intended for use as a spoon tray. Teapot stands were generally hexagonal in form, with sides angled outwards to lessen the risk of damage from the teapot being placed upon it. Another example of this shape, printed and overpainted with The Old Dutch Inn is illustrated by Spero & Sandon (plate 499, The Zorensky Collection).

Transfer-printed over the glaze in black with Robert Hancock's Tea Party (No.2) engraving. Contemporary records refer to this mode of black printed decoration as 'jet enamelled'.

Signed RH to the lower right, and with the anchor rebus for brothers Josiah and Richard Holdship, who oversaw the printing of Hancock's engraved and etched copper plates at the Worcester factory.

Condition: Excellent - no chips, cracks or restoration.

Dimensions: Width 14 cm

Worcester Porcelain 1751-1790: The Zorensky Collection, Simon Spero & John Sandon (Antique Collectors' Club, 1996).


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