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Sévres Porcelain in the Collection of Her Majesty The Queen

The Louis XVI Service

This service, of which the items in the Royal Collection form part, was the most costly and sumptuous ever created at Sèvres in the eighteenth century. It was intended to take 23 years to complete and was the swansong of the gre
The Louis XVI dinner service. RCIN 5000017 ©

Geoffrey De Bellaigue

 293 pages

©

The Sèvres porcelain in the Royal Collection ranks as the finest in the world. This volume, the first of a three-volume catalogue of the Sèvres belonging to Her Majesty, The Queen, is devoted exclusively to the Louis XVI service.

The service was commissioned by Louis XVI in 1783. It was still only half-completed at the time of the King's execution ten years later. The bulk of the service was acquired by George IV in 1811 and thus passed into the Royal Collection, housed at Windsor Castle.

The Louis XVI service was the most expensive service of soft-paste porcelain ever produced at Sèvres in the eighteenth century. Considering its exceptional character, it has been possible to reconstitute the history of its manufacture and to establish the precise contributions of the artists involved. A major part of the catalogue is devoted to the identification of the sources which served as models for the scenes drawn from antiquity and mythology reproduced in the reserves.

Preview a selection of works from the catalogue, below.

Downloadable PDF coming soon