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The sauciere derives from a service delivered in 1787 (about 9.1787) to the Affaires Etrangères as a diplomatic gift to Don Pedro-Pablo Abarca de Bolea Ximinez de Urréa, conde d’Aranda (y de Castelflorida), distinguished ambassador of Spain to France 12.9.1773 – 23.9.1787 and former President of the council in Spain. The conde d’Aranda was an Aragonese and had been as President of Council, the principal adviser of Charles III of Spain for several years; considerable biographical detail on d’Aranda is available, including in a book entitled ‘King Charles III of Spain’. He overstepped the mark in 1773, resigned and was despatched to France as ambassador, where he maintained alliance between France and Spain.
The service was amongst the most expensive ever produced by the Sèvres factory in the 18th century, excluding the high prices applying in the 1750’s and was exceeded only by the Louis XVI, Catherine II and Arabesque Masson services in price. The d’Aranda service included 172 ordinary plates @ 72 livres, which was twice the normal price for a ground colour plate. The service contained 4 saucières and plateau, each sauceboat and tray unit costing 288 livres. Two of the sauceboats and trays were passed to Boileau on 4.7.1786 for decoration and the other two to Bouillat on 12.8.1786; the sauceboat in question clearly derives from the latter pair and the date letters ‘JJ’ signify 1786. Three of the sauceboats are recorded in the Kiln Books on 17.6.1787 and it is likely that the very elaborate gilding occupied a considerable period of time and was the responsibility of the better gilders. Two of the sauceboats in the Kiln Books entry have the name Levé alongside.
|Height||9.50 cm||(3.74 inches)|
|Width||23.50 cm||(9.25 inches)|
|Depth||19.00 cm||(7.48 inches)|