Figure group of a Courting Couple, hard paste porcelain, Royal Porcelain Manufactory, Copenhagen, Denmark, c.1790


This charming figure group depicts a well-dressed young couple sitting on a bale of hay beneath a tree. A small, white dog lies on the ground between them. They hold each other's left hand, the gentleman's right hand placed around her waist, while the lady holds aloft her right hand in apparent reverie. His hair is fashionably tied en queue, whilst her coiffure is of a modish, 'natural' style, the mass of curls being wider than it is tall, fastened in the back with two ringlets failling onto her shoulders. Her collar is of ruffled lace and she wears a yellow bodice and skirt. Both wear patterned stockings and shoes adorned with bows. He wears a cravat and a cutaway tailored coat over a waist-length waistcoat and breeches, the latter having ribbons below the knee.

The Royal Porcelain Factory was founded in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1775, under the protection of the Danish widow Queen Juliane Marie. The factory mark of three wavy lines represents Denmark's three seas: Kattegat, Nordsøen (North Sea) and Skagerrak.

Three vertical waves mark in underglaze blue to the back of the base. The underside of the base, which is mostly unglazed, has two blue dots which have been covered with a tiny dab of glaze.

Condition: There are some damages to the branches and leaves with tiny losses and possibly localised minor restoration. There is a fine hairline through one of the dog's front legs, and minute losses including to a bow on the man's left shoe.

Dimensions: Height 20 cm

Ref. Compare this figure group with Copenhagen examples at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, including the Cavalier and Sleeping Shepherdess (43.100.3) and the Goose Seller (1982.60.208).


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