The magnificent display vases, ormolu-enriched in the French manner, are pearl-encrusted in black and gold japanned papier-mch with landscape vignettes in imitation of Japanese lacquer. They bear the brand of Messrs. Aaron Jennens and T.H. Bettridge (fl. 1815-1864) the celebrated Birmingham papier-mch manufactory. Their foliated Louis Quinze mounts, incorporating Venus-shell badges guarded by Minerva's 'draco' or dragon, reflect the French fashion adopted by marchand merciers, such as the London 'Chinaman', Edward Holmes Baldock (d.1854), who established his Hanway Street business trading in Svres about 1806. Jennens and Bettridge served as 'Japanners in Ordinary' to George IV, and opened their London showrooms in Halkin Street, Belgravia in 1837, while showrooms in Paris and New York followed two years later. In 1825 they took out a patent, devised by George Souter, for 'ornamenting papier mch with pearl shell', and in the early 19th Century their artist Joseph Booth was celebrated for his 'exquisite imitations of Chinese and Japanese ornament'. However, in view of the exceptional quality of these vases, it is likely that they were decorated by a Japanese artist in the employment of Jennens and Bettridge.
A pair of Svres vases with similar dragon mounts, probably supplied by Edward Holmes Baldock to Walter Francis Montagu-Douglas-Scott, 5th Duke of Buccleuch and 7th Duke of Queensberry, was sold by the Duke of Buccleuch and Queensberry, K.T., in these Rooms, 4 December 1986, lot 36.