Covered bowl and stand

Ecuelle ronde et plateau à bord de relief

Made at Vincennes Manufactory (France)

Object Place: Europe, France


Overall: 15.2 x 21.3cm (6 x 8 3/8in.) Other (Stand): 31.5 x 6.4 x 23.5cm (12 3/8 x 2 1/2 x 9 1/4in.) Other (Bowl (at rim)): 15.6cm (6 1/8in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Soft-paste porcelain with colored enamel and gilded decoration

On View

Charles C. Cunningham Gallery (Gallery 247)





The rather deep bowl (7 cm. [2-3/4 in.] on the inside) has a plain foot ring and two unusual scrolled handles in the form of an olive (or laurel) branch; the broken end of the branch is attached near the base, the upper end dividing into two branches, which overlap and fasten to the body with elaborate foliage; there is a twig with two olives at the base and another at the top. The cover is domed (bombé), and the knob is a similar tortuous branch with three fruited twigs. The stand is oval with a circular well to fit the foot of the bowl; the molded, undulating rim is enriched by overlapping leaf scrolls at the ends and sprays of flowers and leaves in relief at the ends and at the sides. There is a little piercing at the ends, where the scrolling fronds overlap. The exterior of the bowl and cover and interior of the stand have a somewhat clouded turquoise ground, indicative of the manner in which the enamel was applied around the intricate foliage of the knob and handles and the eight oval reserves. These reserves are decorated with delicately colored and shaded sprays of flowers and (except for one on the stand) fruit; black is used very sparingly to pick out stamen, and white for some highlights. The flowers in relief on the stand show a similar attention to detail, although the colors are somewhat bolder. Burnished gold is used for the ring at the foot of the bowl, the rounded dentil bands at the rim of the bowl, the edge of the cover, and around the well of the stand, and to outline and pick out details on the molded rim of the stand and the handles and knob of the bowl. The framing of the reserves combines mat and burnished gilding. The six larger cartouches are embellished with fronds of palm leaves joined at the lower and upper center by floral sprays, with more flowers and twigs placed randomly but skillfully against the blue ground; the two smaller reserves on the stand are completely wreathed in flowers, and the center of the well has an arrangement of flowers and fruit on the blue ground. All these flowers and leaves are given relief and detail with a chasing tool.

The écuelle was used in the bedroom to serve broth or bouillon during the elaborate and lengthy ritual of dressing and applying cosmetics in the morning.


(1) on base of bowl, incised: 3
(2) on base of stand:
(3) in blue enamel: interlaced Ls enclosing date letter B; 4
(4) incised: j o


April 1968, purchased in Paris by Rita and Frits Markus, Chatham, MA and New York, NY; 1980, gift of Rita and Frits Markus. (Accession date: January 14, 1981)

Credit Line

Gift of Rita and Frits Markus