Teapot and stand

ARTIST / MAKER: Thomas Holland I (maker)
DATE: 1714-1715 (made)
PLACE: London (made)
MATERIALS AND TECHNIQUES: Engraved silver, wooden handle and feet

This teapot is an early type of pot in which the tea leaves were brewed in hot water over a burner. Teapots of this form appeared in the late 17th century and were made up until around 1720 when they went out of fashion and were replaced by larger and more elaborate hot water kettles. It is also likely that the constant heating of the tea leaves made the tea bitter in taste. Several examples made in 1715, the date of this pot, exist, although accompanying stands are rare survivals. The pear shape was inspired by Chinese ceramics which would have been available in England at this time. Contemporary paintings such as ‘A Family of Three at Tea’ by Richard Collins ca.1727 (V&A; P.9&:1-1934) depict the use of similar teapots on stands.
The engraved crest on the front indicates that this example belonged to Sir Robert Beachcroft (1650–1721), a wealthy London cloth merchant and Lord Mayor of London between 1711-1712.