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American China Manufactory (Bonnin and Morris), Philadelphia, 1770 - 1772

Made in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States, North and Central America


Soft-paste porcelain with underglaze blue decoration

4 5/8 x 2 1/4 inches (11.7 x 5.7 cm)

Curatorial Department:
American Art

* Gallery 209, American Art, second floor

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
125th Anniversary Acquisition. Gift of the McNeil Americana Collection, 2007

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The shape of this vessel (called fluted ware) conforms to the natural lobes of shells, a motif also seen on the two-tiered pickle stands made by Bonnin and Morris. Like on related English wares from the Liverpool, England, factories of Chaffers and Christian, familiar borders in English and Continental designs frame Chinese-style landscapes.

Additional information:
  • PublicationPhiladelphia Museum of Art Handbook (2014 Edition)

    Admired for its hardness, resonance, and translucence, porcelain was a luxury good in the eighteenth century, and American and European manufacturers attempted to duplicate original Chinese prototypes. English pottery maker Gousse Bonnin and American entrepreneur George Anthony Morris established a porcelain manufactory in the Southwark section of Philadelphia in 1770, following closely on the success of a similar operation in South Carolina. This sauceboat, one of very few surviving wares from their factory, imitates contemporary English porcelains with its fluted edges, dotted diamond border, and Chinese-style landscape. A sauceboat of such diminutive size was intended for serving sweet cream or icing in the dessert course of a formal meal. Alexandra Kirtley, from Philadelphia Museum of Art: Handbook. Philadelphia: Philadelphia Museum of Art, 2014, p. 263.

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