• A Marriage of Collections: The auction at Christies

    Sale 2398

    A Marriage of Collections: The Property of Dr. Julius and Dena K. Tarshis

    21 April 2010, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 2

    A RUSSIAN (IMPERIAL GLASS WORKS) CUT AND ENGRAVED GLASS DECANTER AND STOPPER AND A TUMBLER FROM A BANQUET SERVICE

    PROBABLY THIRD QUARTER 19TH CENTURY

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A RUSSIAN (IMPERIAL GLASS WORKS) CUT AND ENGRAVED GLASS DECANTER AND STOPPER AND A TUMBLER FROM A BANQUET SERVICE
    Probably third quarter 19th century
    Each engraved with grapevines and centering an enameled gold foil inclusion depicting the crowned Cyrillic initials 'NN' on ermine, possibly for Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolaevich
    11 in. (27.9 cm.) high, the decanter; 3 1/8 in. (7.9 cm.) high, the tumbler (3)


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    Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolaevich (1831-1891), the third son of Emperor Nicholas I of Russia, married Alexandra of Oldenburg in 1856. For other pieces from this service, see Sotheby's, New York, 26 April 2006, lot 426 and L. Cerwinske, Russian Imperial Style, 1990, p. 175.

    Pre-Lot Text

    RUSSIAN IMPERIAL BANQUET SERVICES

    In 1824, the Imperial Glass Works produced the first so-called Banquet Service as a present from the future Emperor Nicholas I to his wife, the Grand Duchess Alexandra Feodorovna. This service used a recently developed French technique in which a sheet of enameled gold foil decorated with the Grand Duchess' initials was encased between two layers of glass. Using this service as a model, the factory produced subsequent banquet services for other members of the Russian Imperial Family, often as dowries upon their marriages. Most of these services were produced in the 1850s, during the reign of Nicholas I, with replacements being made into the 1880s. Although a number of these Banquet Services have been identified, more await further research.