Tea canister

about 1740
Made at Meissen Manufactory (Germany)

Object Place: Europe, Germany


13 x 8.3 cm (5 1/8 x 3 1/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Hard-paste porcelain with colored enamel and gilded decoration

Not On View





The straight-sided caddy, molded in two pieces, is quatrefoil in section, with a flat shoulder rising to a lip that is fitted with a quatrefoil cover. The cover has straight sides, rising to a dome surmounted by a gilt, lobed finial. The body is decorated with vertical bands of turquoise alternating with polychrome panels, all framed by bands of gold scrollwork. The shoulders and edge of the cover are painted with polychrome deutsche Blumen on a white ground. The two scenes on the caddy show figures in broad landscapes. In the center foreground of one, a standing man dressed in an iron-red coat con verses with a rider, who wears a puce coat. A large tree on the left frames the scene. Beyond, to the right, two other figures may be seen, one mounted on a horse, and toward the horizon, across a body of water, are another pair of figures, a church, and rolling hills. The reserve panel on the other side of the caddy shows a large tree in the left foreground framing three male figures at the edge of a body of water; one, wearing an iron-red coat, is mounted on a horse and converses with a standing man who is dressed in puce. The third stands in a small skiff, which he poles away from the shore. In the middle distance at left is a thatch-roofed cottage surrounded by a picket fence, and among the rolling hills of the background, painted in soft blues and purple, are several buildings. The cover is also treated with alternating bands of turquoise and polychrome scenes. In one scene, a reclining man converses with a standing woman, who gestures to him. In the right background is a tent. The other reserve shows a harbor, where, in the right foreground, two men are in a boat. On the left is a bank, where two figures, a tent, and a mast may be seen. At the horizon are several ships. The figures are dressed in puce, black, and iron-red.


(1) on unglazed base, in blue: crossed swords; in puce (faint): triangle enclosing .S.
(2) inside cover, in puce (faint): traingle enclosing .S. (not illustrated)


Until 1983, Rita and Frits Markus, New York and Chatham, MA; 1983, gift of Rita and Frits Markus to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 18, 1984)

Credit Line

Gift of Rita and Frits Markus