These vases are spectacular not only by virtue of their significant size, but also because of the particular finesse which characterises their mounts. It is this combination of scale and rich surface decoration that identify the present vases as having possibly been executed for the Russian market or possibly made in Russia. In fact, their form conforms to the taste for monumental vases traditionally presented during Christmas and Easter ceremonies in the Winter Palace. Throughout the reign of Nicholas I, the Imperial Porcelain Factory manufactured large scale vases reproducing painting to compliment Old Master works hung in both state and private rooms. In a similar manner, it is conceivable that the present vases could have started life with patinated bronze bodies imitating malachite, and could have been commissioned for an interior scheme devoted to the stone. A related pair of vases in ormolu and malachite, with comparable scrolled handles, is in the Malachite Hall of the Winter Palace, the décor of which was furnished by Alexander Briullov circa 1839 (ill. A. Gaydamak, Russian Empire, Moscow, 2000, pp.148-9).