An 18th Century London Decorated Chinese Export Porcelain Coffee Cup.

A Chinese export porcelain coffee cup, gilded in London c.1755-1765 with swags of flowers. Possibly James Giles or his workshop.


Good condition, tiny rim frits and minor wear to the gilding.
Height : 6.2 cm (2 1/2 inches).
R and G McPherson Antiques, stock number 20835, January 31 2012. The Helen Expire Collection of European Decorated Chinese Export Porcelain.
Stock number



English Decoration on White Chinese Porcelain :
This type of English enamel decoration on Chinese export porcelain should be seen in a different way to what is referred to as `over-decorated` or `clobbered` porcelain. Those terms refer to Chinese porcelain that was imported into Europe as finished articles, but were either too plain for merchants to sell or their profits could be enhanced by adding enamels over the existing Chinese decoration. The present example was plain white when it arrived in England, it would not have been salable and so no merchant would have ordered it to retail. However, James Giles must have ordered allot of white porcelain specifically for decoration at his workshop in London. The shapes ordered were the lasted fashion in Europe as was the decoration he added. To my mind this makes these objects separate and distinct from other Chinese porcelain, China only provided the blank `canvas` and even that was of a form dictated to by Europe. For this reason these objects could primarily be see as English, they would have been totally alien to the Chinese.