Teapot

1850-1851 (hallmarked)

Angell, Joseph (the younger)

Height: 22.4 cm, Width: 23 cm, Depth: 19 cm

M.27A-1983 MET

Teapot from a coffee and tea service by Joseph Angell II; silver, parcel-gilt with enamel; London hallmarks for 1851-52.

Teapot from a tea service by Joseph Angell Junior; silver with enamel; Silver with coloured enamels, raised, chased, cast handle with ivory protective strips and cast spout This tea and coffee service consists of a coffee pot, teapot, milk jug and sugar basin. Each piece is of the same general shape although the coffee pot and jug are of a more attenuated form. Each item rests on scroll feet, the lower body of concave, faceted shape swelling to a rounded, angular plan. The upper body of each is of similar, concave, faceted form to that of the lower part and terminates in a regular, scrolled rim. Domed faceted lids surmount the coffee pot and teapot with angular pinnacles forming the knops. The handles of each object are angular with stylised, leaf ornament. The spouts of the coffee pot and teapot are similarly moulded; the milk jug has a wide, flowing lip. This service is decorated with inset, angular silver panels inlaid with translucent enamels coloured green and purple interspersed with tongue shaped, raised reserves which have been engraved with stylised, geometric patterns. The style of the service is an eclectic mixture of 19th century Gothic Revival, Near Eastern and rococo motifs.

Object Type The form, decoration and colour are combined with great verve in this piece from a tea and coffee service. The enamelled decoration is especially fine with inset medallions of purple and green translucent enamel, reminiscent of the work of leading Parisian goldsmiths of the time. The Parisians' success with the technique of enamelling was much admired and envied in England. People The designer of this piece, Joseph Angell, inherited the London silversmithing business founded by his father. In addition to the Prize medal awarded in 1851, he won prizes for his enamelled silver at the New York International Exhibition of 1853 and for work shown at the International Exhibition of 1862. Time A revival of interest in the use of enamelling had been championed in England by English designers and by silversmiths associated with the Medieval movement from the 1830s for use in the decoration of church plate. It was unusual to find enamel work on domestic metalwork. The influence of French manufacturers like J.V. Morel, who moved to London in 1849, may have stimulated the English use of enamelling on secular objects.

This tea and coffee service comprises a coffee pot, teapot, jug and sugar bowl. The service is decorated with inset angular silver panels inlaid with translucent enamels in green and purple interspersed with tongue shaped raised reserves which have been engraved with stylised geometric patterns. The style of the service is an eclectic mixture of nineteenth century Gothic, Near Eastern and Rococo motifs. The designer and maker, Joseph Angell, won a Prize Medal for technical ingenuity and decorative virtuosity in the use of enamels at the Great Exhibition of 1851 in London. Enamelling had previously been championed by English goldsmiths associated with the medieval movement for use on the decoration of ecclesiastical objects but it is rare on secular plate. The influence of French manufacturers, such as J.V. Morel who moved to London in 1849, may have stimulated the English interest in secular enamel work. Joseph Angell's specialisation coincided with the climax of the workshop's fortunes and its success at the Great Exhibition. There is no doubt that his service was made specifically for the Exhibition. Angell, a member of the Society of Arts, where the idea for the exhibition had germinated, showed pieces of enamelled ware at one of their meetings in the spring of 1851, as a foretaste of his display later in the year. In his own catalogue, published under the title of "Descriptive Particulars" in 1851, he stated that his exhibits were made for the exhibition, "within a period of five months". The tea and coffee service, No. 2 in his catalogue, was offered at £120, an enormous sum which reflected the complexity of its construction and was three times that of a more conventional silver service. Purchased from Mrs. Ursula Burgess for £5500 From a tea service. Great Exhibition of 1851, Joseph Angell jun. won a medal for his enamel work, bronze medal in New York in 1853, and also received an award at the 1862 exhibition. Angell worked in Clerkenwell in the 1850s and employed 35 men and boys (see Culme). Neg._No: HG 1606 (SET)

Location: British Galleries, room 122f, case 4

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