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2005/200/27 Plate, mazarine blue ground, bone china, Chelsea Porcelain Works, England, 1757-1769. Click to enlarge.

Bone china plate

Made by Chelsea Porcelain Works in London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom, Europe, 1757-1769.
The London porcelain factory, Chelsea, made this dinner plate during the 'gold anchor' period that spanned from 1758 to 1769. This was the most opulent phase in the factory's history as it witnessed the introduction of rich ground colours, delicate imagery and elaborate gilding. Perhaps the most popular of these new ground colours, mazarine blue appeared on all manner of objects and emphasised gilded and enamelled decoration. This plate, with a mazarine border, is an exceptional example of the porcelain from that period.

French artisans, Charles Gouyan and Nichols Sprimont, established the Chelsea porcelain factory in London in 1743 and modelled their soft-paste porcelain wares upon the exceptional pieces produced by Sèvres and Meissen. Employing highly skilled craftsmen, the pair manufactured some of the best examples of English porcelain and catered exclusively to the local luxury market. Their wares are now divided into four periods that are defined by changes to the porcelain marks. These are the 'triangle' period from 1743 to 1750; the 'raised anchor' period from 1750 to 1756; the 'red anchor' period from 1753 to 1758 (it overlapped the previous period by three years); and the 'gold anchor' from 1758 to 1769. Sprimont sold the Chelsea business to Derby in 1770, and the two enterprises operated under the combined name, 'Chelsea-Derby', until 1784.


Object No.


Object Statement

Plate, mazarine blue ground, bone china, Chelsea Porcelain Works, England, 1757-1769

Physical Description

Plate, bone china, made by Chelsea Porcelain Works, England, 1757-1769

A round, white porcelain plate with a scalloped and gilt edge, a mazarine blue ground and four reserves. The central reserve features a hand painted branch of yellow fruit and four insects. Around the border are three reserves with hand-painted birds and branches. Surrounding each reserve is border of gilt foliage. The underside of the rim is decorated with three branches of gilt foliage.


Manufacturers mark on base, gold anchor
Three spur marks on base
Round white paper label on base, printed 'ART GALLERY OF NEW SOUTH WALES'
AGNSW accession number on base, hand written in black ink with unknown base and top coats, '8917'
PHM loan number on base, hand written in black pen with unknown base and top coats, 'L2019-139'



27 mm



The London porcelain factory, Chelsea, made this plate between 1758 and 1769. The dry body was painted with the mazarine border and then fired. It was then glazed, re-fired and painted with enamels. The piece was fired a third time, fusing the enamel colours to the glaze. Gilt details were applied, and the plate was fired a final time.



This plate was transferred to the Powerhouse Museum in 1998 as part of the collection that Annie Maria Gillies (Mrs Sinclair Gillies) bequeathed to the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 1953. This collection consisted of around 191 objects, including important examples of eighteenth-century English furniture and porcelain. The Gallery never accessioned these items, and decided to sell the majority in 1997, transferring a portion to the Powerhouse Museum.


Credit Line

Transfer from the Art Gallery of NSW, 1998 Bequest of Annie Maria Gillies, 1953

Acquisition Date

15 September 2005

Cite this Object


Bone china plate 2020, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 28 May 2020, <>


{{cite web |url= |title=Bone china plate |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=28 May 2020 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}

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