Chinese Rose Medallion

In the few pieces of porcelain I have collected there is a piece of #rosemedallion from China. It was most likely made around 1830 to 1840 for the European export market. The classic Rose Medallion decoration usually includes a number of panels painted (depending on the size and shape of the piece) with depictions of people, birds, and flowers. The predominant colours being green, pink, blue, yellow, black, and gilt. You, of course, will notice that my piece was broken and has been repaired. Repairs were once done quite differently than today with our modern adhesives.Repairs to such things as porcelain were not easy. So, repairs were done to items which were valuable in some sense. The tools used would have been similar to dentist tools. A small drill, diamond sparks, metal files, pliers, hammer, wire, solder, plaster, and cement. Tiny holes were drilled into the porcelain (not completely through) and staples would be inserted after a fine layer of plaster or cement was placed onto the broken edges. Repairs were done this way because until our epoxy resin adhesives were invented all adhesives were made of natural materials and thusly water soluble.

This type of repair looks, to our eyes, quite crude but by doing it this way it ensured that the repaired crockery would withstand the regular cycle of use and washing up required by any item of tableware in the kitchen.

This piece was once a loved member of a dining set. To be repaired as it has been shows the value it held to its’ then owner. I know it can be repaired, today, to the extent that you would not know it had been broken if you were not told. But I think their is an argument for keeping it as it is and not mending it.

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