MacDougall's Russian Art Auctions 25 March 2015

25 March 2015

Artist Index / Full Catalogue

A Porcelain Tea-Caddy in Chinoiserie Style

* 149.

A Porcelain Tea-Caddy in Chinoiserie Style

3,000—5,000 GBP

Height 17 cm.

with red overglaze Chinese eternal knot mark

This decoratively painted with characters in the Chinese style container with a lid, made at Popov manufactory, was designed to store tea. Tea first appeared in Russia in 1638, when the Russian ambassador Vasiliy Starikov brought four puds of tea leaves from the Mongol Khan Altyn as a gift to Tsar Mikhail Fyodorovich Romanov. Tea was very expensive and for a long time it remained the preserve of the rich. In noble households the mistress would usually look after this valuable commodity as a cherished asset and would keep it not in the larder but in her own sleeping chamber, in special tea caddies. In the 19th century tea had already established a firm place for itself in Russian life and become a truly national drink. Nonetheless, the tradition of keeping tea in special caddies was maintained into the 19th century. Colourful caddies were made from various materials, including porcelain, both by the Imperial Porcelain Factory and by private manufacturers.

Notes on symbols:
* Indicates 5% Import Duty Charge applies.
Ω Indicates 20% Import Duty Charge applies.
§ Indicates Artist's Resale Right applies.
† Indicates Standard VAT scheme applies, and the rate of 20% VAT will be charged on both hammer price and premium.