Napoleon III tea set, decorated with gallant scenes, up for auction

AT THE KING’S TABLE – This Sunday, the Osenat auction house will auction in Fontainebleau an original tea service that was delivered to Napoleon III in 1864. for his château of Saint-Cloud.

It can be assumed that Emperor Napoleon III placed his lips on the edge of the cup. Or his wife Empress Eugenie. What is certain is that the tea set that is being auctioned this Sunday, December 10, 2023 at Fontainebleau as part of the House of Osenat’s empire sale, was supplied to the emperor for his the palace of Saint-Cloud on September 10, 1864. These pieces of Sèvres porcelain, marked with a crowned N, are housed in a leather case decorated with large imperial arms in gilt irons and trimmed with purple silk.

Priced at €4,000 to €6,000, the set on offer includes a covered teapot, a cup and saucer, a covered sugar bowl, a three-legged milk jug and a covered butter dish and its saucer. “This service entered the sales warehouse of the Sèvres factory on August 31, 1864, the decoration then described: relief gold fillet, subject of figures in the style of Watteau,” we can read in the description of this lot.

Couples staged in Watteau-style gardens

It is also noted that some of the gallant Watteau-style scenes featuring couples in gardens in these various works are signed by François Philippe Abel Schilt fils. Born in 1820, this painter worked at the Sèvres factory between 1847 and 1880. As for the gilding, it is the work of Aimé Joseph Goddé, who worked for him between 1856 and 1882.

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