Tankard, Qianlong c.1760, with the arms of Nassau, Earl of Rochford, quarterly with Zuylestein in pretence
A 4¼ inch tankard, c.1760, with the Dutch arms of Nassau quartering Dietz, Vianden and Catznellogen, with Zuylestein on an escutcheon of pretence, with lion supporters and an earl’s coronet for the Earls of Rochford.
Just seven other services share this black cell border edged with gold scroll bands, while both the handle and ribbed form of the body emulating a bamboo cane are also seen on a set of three graduated tankards which were made at this time for Dorothy Parker, Countess of Macclesfield.
The Earls of Rochford descend from a natural son of Prince Frederick Henry de Nassau of Orange, grandfather of King William III. The grandson, William Henry de Zuylestein, accompanied his half-cousin to England and was created Earl of Rochford in 1708.
His descendant, the 4th Earl, William Henry Nassau de Zuylestein (1717-81), for whom this tankard was made, was a diplomat and statesman, holding ambassadorial posts at Madrid and Versailles, and the key adviser to George III on foreign affairs, who remarked on his ’many amiable qualities’. In 1742 Rochford married Lucy Younge and an earlier Chinese service with plain border was made with the same arms impaling those of Younge.
Reference : Howard, David S.; Chinese Armorial Porcelain, Volume I, p.260
Condition : Faint glaze line at hand base filled; otherwise excellent with original enamels and gilding