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D1949. Pair of Polychrome Butter Tubs and Covers
Delft, circa 1765
Both tubs and covers marked MP 0/2 in blue for De Metaale Pot (The Metal Pot) factory during the ownership of Pieter Paree from 1757 to 1770
Each octagonal shaped tub molded with blue and yellow delineated wickerwork and affixed at the ends with yellow handles molded with iron-red-dotted blossoms, the octagonal covers painted along the yellow rim with a border of four blue flowering plants alternated by four demi-flowerheads surrounding the knop consisting of five molded yellow pears.
Heights: 7.5 cm. (2.9 in.); Lengths: 14 cm. (5.5 in.)
Note: Dining à la Française (in the French manner) was a fashionable new style of dining, where guests were served numerous dishes at once during the formal dinner service. A wide range of wares were designed in the newly stylish trompe l’ceil to complement the dishes, which were symmetrically arranged on the table and within reach for guests to serve themselves. Dinner wares cleverly imitated nature in the form of fruits and vegetables. Further, the table itself would be adorned with real flowers or fruits. A pair of butter tubs like the present one, formed as a wickerwork basket with a stack of pears, would fit accordingly on the dinner table.
Similar examples: A different butter tub model with wickerwork and a stack of five pears that is marked for De Porceleyne Byl (The Porcelain Axe) factory, is in the collection of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris (inv. no. 24890) and illustrated in Lahaussois 1994, p. 141, no. 186. An oval shaped butter tub with pears (inv. no. 24892), also marked for De Porceleyne Byl (The Porcelain Axe) factory is illustrated on the same page, no. 185. A pair of oval shaped pear butter tubs with wickerwork baskets are illustrated in Lavino,
p. 133 and 134.