COLLECTION: Revolution in Taste

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Figure of Falstaff

ca. 1765
Origin: England, Tower Hamlets, Bow
H: 9 5/8"; W: 4 13/16"; D: 3 1/2"
Porcelain, soft-paste
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1962-11
Soft-paste porcelain figure resembling the character Falstaff. He stands against a tree stump that is covered in flowers. The flowers are painted with overglaze enamels. The figure wears a large black hat with plumes, ruffled collar, purple coat with green lining, orange belt and breeches, black boots, and a cream waistcoat. The cream waistcoat is decorated with a gilt floral pattern and gilt buttons. On the pocket of the waistcoat is an inscription: "Jack 1.0", Anchovey o1"0, Capon o.o.2, Bread " 0.0 1/2, Brandy 2.0. [Total] 1.3.2 1/2." He has purple hair. In his right hand he holds a sword handle which is highlighted with purple and gilding. There is a black and gilt scabbard at his left hip. On his left arm is an oval purple and gilt shield. The irregular shaped base is decorated with Rococo styles scrolls highlighted with gilding. There is a square hole on the back in the tree trunk for ventilation.

Label:This figure has been identified as James Quin, an eighteenth century British actor, portraying the Shakespearean character Falstaff. The Falstaff character appears in three of William Shakespeare's plays, including: "Henry IV: Part I," "Henry IV: Part II," and "The Merry Wives of Windsor."
Provenance:Ex coll: M.G. Kaufman