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Putto as Venus with a Dove: C.5-1956

Object information

Current Location: Gallery 26 (Lower Marlay)


Putto as Venus with a Dove


Factory: Höchst Porcelain Manufactory
Modeller: Melchior, Johann Peter




Hard-paste porcelain painted in pale greyish-blue, green, flesh-pink, pink, a little red, pale grey, and brown enamels and gilded. The glazed underside is divided front to back by a low wall. The flat area on the right has a round ventilation hole, and the left area is concave. The base is moulded to resemble clouds, and rises up into a swirling pedestal which supports the figure. It is painted in alternate areas of pale greyish-blue and pink which overlap and appear mauve. The slightly podgy child Venus semi-reclines on the cloud, leaning on her right hand and holding her left up in front of her. She has her pale grey hair swept up into a knot on top of her head and wears a gold frontlet decorated with two pink flowers, two small blue flowers, and two leaves. Her skin is delicately tinted flesh pink, and she has brown eyes, and pale red lips. She is nude and sits on a green drape. The dove perches on the lower cloud to the viewer's left.


History note: G.W. Kerin, London

Legal notes

Purchased with the Dr. F.R. Cowper Reed Fund

Measurements and weight

Height: 14.8 cm
Height: 5⅞ in

Place(s) associated

  • Höchst-am-Main ⪼ Germany

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1956-04-26)


18th Century, third quarter
Circa 1770 CE - 1775 CE


Johann Peter Melchior worked as a modeller at Höchst between 1767 and 1779 when he moved to Frankenthal.

School or Style


Components of the work

Decoration composed of enamel ( pale greyish-blue, green, flesh-pink, pink, a little red, pale grey, and brown enamels) gold
Base Width 9.8 cm Width 4 in

Materials used in production

clear; except edge of base Glaze
Hard-paste porcelain

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: a wheel
  • Location: On top of base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Factory mark

Inscription present: deep circular impression

  • Location: On underside of base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.5-1956
Primary reference Number: 140317
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Thursday 17 December 2015 Last processed: Wednesday 13 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Putto as Venus with a Dove" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-04-20 08:55:24

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{{cite web|url= |title=Putto as Venus with a Dove |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-04-20 08:55:24|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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