This service is one of two ordered in c. 1785 for José de Gálvez (1720-1787), when he became both Marquis of Sonora, Mexico, and the first President of the Royal Company of the Philippines, which supervised trade between China and Spain. The first service ordered by José bore his name in a pennant above the arms and included large animal and fish tureens. It is believed that it was not intended that his name should be reproduced on the porcelain but only had been given for identification purposes and that the second service, without his name, was therefore ordered for regular use. He was made Knight of the Order of Charles III in 1772 and in 1776 he was promoted to Minister of Indies. The arms are quartered with Gálvez, García de Segovia, Madrid and Cabrera.
See Howard and Ayers, China for the West, London and New York, 1978, vol.II, no. 386, p. 390 for a monteith with these arms; and J. G. Phillips, China-Trade Porcelain, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1956, pl. 30 for an identical monteith together with a tureen and cover as pl. 29, which is also illustrated by M. Beurdeley, Porcelain of the East India Companies, London, 1962, cat. 167, together with another monteith as cat. 117, and a goose tureen from the first service in the Espirito Santo Collection, Lisbon, as colour plate XVII, p. 85. A milk jug and cup with these arms are in the Museum of Decorative Arts, Madrid, illustrated, Oriental Art, vol. XLV, no. 1, 1999, 'The Spanish Market' by A. Diez de Rivera, fig. 6.