Decorative Arts and Design
The form of nearly contemporary Japanese ceramic teapots directly inspired this surprisingly modern-looking, intimate tea set. Silverplate, made by electroytically bonding silver particles to base metals, was an inexpensive alternative to costly silver. Because it was inexpensive, silverplate companies often produced adventurous designs that were highly responsive to the latest styles. Here the shape exemplifies the Japanese craze of the late 1870s and 1880s, and the linear, two-dimensional incised floral decoration is rendered in the so-called Eastlake, or Reform, style imported from England at the same time.
Silver-plate on white metal
4 1/4 x 5 5/8 x 3 1/2 in. (10.8 x 14.3 x 8.9 cm) (show scale)
Impressed on bottom: "JAMES W. TUFTS / BOSTON / [four-pointed star enclosing 'T'] / WARRENTED / TRIPLE PLATE / 1900."
Purchased with funds given by Roy Zuckerberg
Teapot (en suite with creamer and sugar bowl 1990.39.2-.3), silver-plate on white metal. Body is in the shape of truncated pyramid with square base with flat hinged lid; two S-curving faux bamboo handles spout with C-curve bamboo attached strut above and D-shaped angular faux bamboo handle. Finial is a cube, on point, resting on a short tapered base. Each face of the pyramid is densely engraved. At top of the pyramid is a double band with interlocking chevrons in lower part, interlocking semi-palmettes in upper. At base of pyramid is another band of alternating demi-lunes and chevrons on front and rear of body and alternating half-fans on two ends. On front face of body a diagonal reserve runs from lower left to upper right with the hoped handle of a basket looped over it. Basket depends into right section over vermiculae ground; foliage in lower right corner. In upper left is a bird perched on a branch with blossom, on vermiculae ground. On rear face of body, diagonal reserve runs from lower left to upper right. Above are bamboo shoots on vermiculae ground, standing in marsh with semi-fan shape at lower right. On face behind handle a diagonal reserve runs from lower left to upper right and a diagonal band with cross bandings intersects this at upper handle juncture and runs to lower right edge. Pointed oval lozenge overlaps at the intersection and is filled with stalk and blossoms. In area to upper right is a ground of overlapping semi-discs. To the left of the handle on vermiculae ground are two long-tailed birds, back to back, foliage in lower left corner. On face with spout, diagonal reserve runs from lower left to upper right. To the left is a branching vine on vermicular ground. To the right is a flying, long-beaked bird, on vermiculae ground, with foliage. On lid, a diagonal band runs from corner to corner under the finial and is filled with discs with stylized blossoms on articulated ground. The band runs over a central checkerboard square, which is bordered, by a detached band of scroll pattern.
Condition: Plate worn in places, especially on handle, finial, hinge. Finial slightly depressed. Dent on front face to left of basket handle.
This item is not on view
James W. Tufts (1875-ca. 1914). Teapot, ca. 1880. Silver-plate on white metal, 4 1/4 x 5 5/8 x 3 1/2 in. (10.8 x 14.3 x 8.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased with funds given by Roy Zuckerberg, 1990.39.1. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 1990.39.1_mark.jpg)
mark, 1990.39.1_mark.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2005
"CUR" at the beginning of an image file name means that the image was created by a curatorial staff member. These study images may be digital point-and-shoot photographs, when we don\'t yet have high-quality studio photography, or they may be scans of older negatives, slides, or photographic prints, providing historical documentation of the object.
You may download and use Brooklyn Museum images of this three-dimensional work in accordance with a Creative Commons license
. Fair use, as understood under the United States Copyright Act, may also apply.
Please include caption information from this page and credit the Brooklyn Museum. If you need a high resolution file, please fill out our online application form
For further information about copyright, we recommend resources at the United States Library of Congress
, Cornell University
, Copyright and Cultural Institutions: Guidelines for U.S. Libraries, Archives, and Museums
, and Copyright Watch
For more information about the Museum's rights project, including how rights types are assigned, please see our blog posts on copyright
If you have any information regarding this work and rights to it, please contact email@example.com
Not every record you will find here is complete. More information is available for some works than for others, and some entries have been updated more recently. Records are frequently reviewed and revised, and we welcome
any additional information you might have.