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This is a beautiful orphaned coffee cup made by a Staffordshire pottery some time around 1800. In this period, cups and saucers were sold as a "true trio" consisting of a teacup, coffee cup and saucer - as you would never drink tea and coffee at the same time, why would you waste money on an extra saucer? However, this coffee cup lost its companion teacup and saucer, but it is still  a beautiful little cup that holds about one double espresso, or a macchiato.


It is believed that in the early 19th Century there were as many as 300 potteries in Staffordshire alone, and many of them left no trace behind other than the beautiful items they produced. While some have been researched extensively, making use of conserved documentation, others are completely unknown. This cup is made by one of the potteries that we don't know anything about; the shape is common but its particulars not familiar with any known designs. If there are any experts out there who recognise the maker, I would love to hear!


This cup is made in very thin creamy porcelain that is very translucent, see the picture taken from the top; you can see right through the walls of the cup. It is very simply decorated with tiny little flowers and a nice puce band around the rim. 


The cup is unmarked except a little imprinted ring in the bottom; I don't know whether this is a mark or simply something that occurred during the production process.


CONDITION REPORT The cup is in perfect antique condition without any damage, repairs, crazing or significant wear, other than some very light scratches as visible in the pictures.


Antique British porcelain is never perfect. Kilns were fired on coal in the 1800s, and this meant that china from that period can have some firing specks from flying particles. British makers were also known for their experimentation, and sometimes this resulted in technically imperfect results. Due to the shrinkage in the kiln, items can have small firing lines or develop crazing over time, which should not be seen as damage but as an imperfection of the maker's recipes, probably unknown at the time of making. Items have often been used for many years and can have normal signs of wear, and gilt can have signs of slight disintegration even if never handled. I will reflect any damage, repairs, obvious stress marks, crazing or heavy wear in the item description but some minor scratches, nicks, stains and gilt disintegration can be normal for vintage items and need to be taken into account.


There is widespread confusion on the internet about the difference between chips and nicks, or hairlines and cracks. I will reflect any damage as truthfully as I can, i.e. a nick is a tiny bit of damage smaller than 1mm and a chip is something you can easily see with the eye; a glazing line is a break in the glazing only; hairline is extremely tight and/or superficial and not picked up by the finger; and a crack is obvious both to the eye and the finger. Etcetera - I try to be as accurate as I can and please feel free to ask questions or request more detailed pictures!


DIMENSIONS diameter 6.4cm (2.5").

Staffordshire orphaned coffee cup, puce flowers, ca 1800