A large dinner service by Mason's, England, late 19th century

A large dinner service by Mason's, England, late 19th century


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A Mason's ironstone china Imari blossoming tree pattern dinner service. Wonderful rich colours, this dinner service dates to the early part of the 19th century and comprises eleven dinner plates, twelve soup bowls, twelve dessert plates, twelve side plates, turkey platter with well and tree, nine various meat or serving platters and dishes one with strainer, soup tureen, two vegetable tureens and two sauce tureens (68 pieces in total including covers).

Mason’s was one of the most famous ironstone manufacturers of the time. Ironstone was patented by the British potter Charles James Mason in 1813. His father, Miles Mason (1752–1822) married the daughter of Richard Farrar, who had a business selling imported Oriental porcelain in London. Subsequently Mason continued this business, but after the East India Company ceased the bulk importation of Oriental porcelain in 1791 he began to manufacture his own wares. This set is a superb example of his early work.

Condition: surface scratches on all pieces, wear to the decoration in places on the majority of pieces, wear to the gilt in some areas mainly to the finials and to the handles. There is a chip to the edge of one of the small plates and some small minor chips to the edges of a couple of the other plates. There is an area of loss to part of the finial of the lid of the vegetable tureen, also an old repair using metal staples across the entire length of the same lid. All items have general wear and tear commensurate with age and use. See photos for details.

Dimensions: largest serving plate 45cm wide, 40cm deep, 3cm high; soup plate 26cm diameter, 4cm high, dinner plate 26cm diameter, 3cm high; side plate 23cm diameter, 3cm high; dessert plate 19cm diameter, 2cm high.