A pair of Barr, Flight & Barr Worcester Dessert Plates, circa 1807-13


The decoration on this pair of richly patterned Barr, Flight & Barr dessert plates clearly reflects the Regency taste for oriental design, prevalent in Britain between the years 1811-20. The iron red enamel, underglaze blue, and rich gilding demonstrates the influence of Japanese Imari wares. The plates are finely decorated with an imaginary garden scene at the centre of which is a blue and gilt scholar’s rock, and a fretwork fence. A blue long-tailed bird is in flight, surrounded by enormous, exotic-looking leafy blooms. In the grassy foreground are three rocky clumps. The red and gold border is of alternate stylised leafy flower heads and gilt leaves. Gilt line rims.

Impressed crown and BFB marks, and Royal Warrant marks printed in puce.

Provenance: An English Private Collection.

We also have other pieces decorated with this pattern, including nine dessert plates and a large plate.

With extravagant projects such as the Royal Pavilion at Brighton, The Prince of Wales led the fashionable elite when it came to exhibiting a taste for opulence. He very much favoured designs which were inhibitively expensive to produce, adding to the exclusivity of his own collection, whilst preventing lesser manufacturers from recreating pieces. Indeed, he spent a vast fortune on porcelain, including at least six rich Worcester services. Two of his Barr, Flight & Barr services are decorated in the rich Imari taste, and in 1807, he awarded the company his Royal Warrant.

Condition: No damage, restoration or re-gilding. There is wear to parts of the gilt line rim on both plates, although the decoration is generally in excellent order, with only very light surface wear. One plate has an area on the reverse where the glaze ran slightly around the foot rim during manufacture, and now contains specks of kiln dust.

Dimensions: Diameter 20.7 cm

Flight and Barr Worcester Porcelain 1783-1840, Henry Sandon (Antique Collectors’ Club, 1992).