Chinese Export Porcelain
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Curtis, Julia B. “Chinese Export Porcelain in Eighteenth-century Tidewater Virginia ,” Studies in Eighteenth-Century Culture 17 (1987): 119-144
Richards, Rhys. “Reviewing Early American Trade with China , 1784-1833,” Mains'l Haul: A Journal of Pacific Maritime History 2003 39(2): 14-19.
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1. Chinese export porcelain is just one example of the British fascination with “Chinoiserie” and exotic imports in the eighteenth century. What other exotic goods became fashionable in eighteenth-century British culture in the colonies? When did they become popular and where were they coming from?
2. Sets of porcelain tablewares were generally very large. How much variation in form could be found in a single set of porcelain? What were the various forms used for? What were the most common forms? What were the most specialized?
3. Examine probate inventories from Virginia between 1750-1775. Compare and discuss both the kinds and the amount of ceramics in elite, aspiring, decent and old-fashioned households. http://www.gunstonhall.org/library/probate/index.htm
4. Chinese export porcelain cups were often used to drink tea. Discuss the tea ceremony in early America . To what extent was this a gendered activity?