Jean-Franois Leleu, matre in 1764.
The Svres porcelain manufacture records indicate that 'un chien dor, 120 livres' was sold from the manufacture on 20 November 1766 (Svres V9 4, folio 88 verso). Among the special commissions during that year it was also listed as 'un chien colorier, 48 livres Dodin'.
It is probable that this dog was commissioned as a present. Madame de Pompadour who is often linked to such models of spaniels, had however died in 1764, the year of Leleu's matrise. Leleu is, however, recorded to have worked for both Lalive de Jully and for the Choiseul family. The duc de Choiseul was disgraced in 1771 but his many friends praised his exemplary loyalty (fidlit). It is possible that this dog was either a present for or by the duc.
A similar Svres dog was lent by the Earl of Rosebery to the 'Three French Reigns' exhibition, 25 Park Lane, 1933, fig. 134. It had a label describing it as a portrait of the favourite dog of Marie Antoinette, found in the Queen's Chambre de Toilette at the Tuileries after 10 August 1792.
A Vincennes figure of a poodle, its collar inscribed Sophie, was sold in these Rooms, 28 March 1983, lot 22. It may depict one of Madame de Pompadour's dogs and is a reversed variant of one still preserved at the Svres factory (E. Bourgeois and G. Lechevallier-Chevignard, Le Biscuit de Svres, recueil des modles de la manufacture de Svres au XVIIIe Sicle, no. 143, pl. O4).
Baronne Nathaniel de Rothschild, who exhibited this model in 1889, could refer to either Emma Louise de Rothschild (1844 - 1935) or Charlotte de Rothschild (1825 - 1899).