This service was given by the Saxon Elector Friedrich August II (King August III of Poland), to Elizabeth I Petrovna on the occasion of the marriage of her nephew, Grand Prince Peter Fedorovich, later Peter III, to Sophie-Auguste von Anhalt-Zerbst, later Catherine II Alekseevna (Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia 1762-1796).
Some 440 pieces of the service are listed in an inventory (dated 5th November 1745) of certain chattels belonging to the Imperial household of St. Petersburg. 145 pieces of this service are still in Hermitage. For other examples from this service see '18th Century Meissen porcelain, The Hoffmeister Collection' Catalogue Hamburg, 2000, Vol. II., p. 546, no. 363 and pp. 572-574. See also Ulrich Pietsch, Frühes Meissener Porzellan Sammlung Carabelli Munich, 2000, p. 264, no. 135, and Rainer Rückert, Meissener Porzellan, Munich, 1966, no. 482.
The Order of St. Andrew, the highest of all Russian Imperial Orders, was founded in 1698 by Peter the Great, and the cross is a simplified version of the Order's badge; depicted without the black double-headed eagle that usually accompanies it, and St. Andrew is also depicted without a halo. The letters at each end of the cross, S, A, P and R are an abbreviation of Sanctus Andreas Patronus Russiae.
The moulded Gotzkowsky erhabene Blumen decoration was first developed by J.F. Eberlein in 1741 for a service for the German merchant Gotzkowsky.