This piece was presented as an award of excellence to the premier laureate group of decorative arts at the l'Exposition Universelle of 1878. The form was designed by Edme Couty and was known as the Prix de Svres. See Charlotte Gere 'European Decorative Arts at the World's Fairs: 1850-1900' The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, Winter 1998-99', p. 43. for a similar presentation piece currently housed at the Metropolitan (Inv. no. 1900.23ab).