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Arts of Europe

The MFAH collections of art created on the European continent encompass artistic styles across the time line of history, from the ancient world to the Middle Ages, and the Early Modern era to the 21st century.

 
 
 
FLIGHT (WORCESTER PORCELAIN)
English, Active 1783 - 1792
Platter
c. 1790
Soft-paste porcelain

1 1/16 x 9 13/16 inches

 
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

The Rienzi Collection
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Harris Masterson III

Arts of Europe
 
ABOUT

This platter is from a grand dinner service ordered in 1790 by the Duke of Clarence, who would later become King William IV. Called the “Hope” service, the pieces all feature a scene of a woman holding an anchor. This image was understood to represent “hope” because hope was the anchor of the soul.

By the early 1780s, Worcester had lost its position as one of the most successful and innovative English factories. Thomas Flight, Worcester´s London agent, purchased the factory in the hopes of saving the company and in a few years, under the guidance of Flight´s son, the factory was again creating fashionable wares in the latest French styles and shapes. The reversal of the factory's fortunes was further aided by royal commissions such as those from the Duke of Clarence.