About this artwork
The style of this tea set (1950.1584 and 1950.1648a-c) was a popular one in New York at the turn of the 19th century. The shapes and decoration of the set were inspired by classical Roman designs unearthed at Herculaneum and Pompeii during the 1730s, and reinterpretation of the finds were disseminated in the popular furniture designs of Thomas Sheraton and George Hepplewhite. The bright-cut engraving is typical of the period. The Van Voorhis pieces employ a large drapery swag as a background to the central motif containing engraved initials of the original owner. The companion tea caddy (1950.1585) was made later to match the three-piece set; though the engraving on the caddy looks the same as those on the rest of the set, close examination reveals that it is by a different hand.
- Ward, Bartholomew & Trott
- Tea Caddy
- c. 1802
- Marked on bottom, in rectangle: WB & T Engraved at center on front: R. B. M. N.
- 15.9 × 4 × 14.6 cm (6 1/4 × 4 × 5 3/4 in.); 507.6 g
- Gift of the Antiquarian Society through Mrs. James C. Hutchins Jr.