Plate, 1770–1800. China (for export). Porcelain with overglaze enamel painting and gilding. Gift of Alma de Bretteville Spreckels, 1953.39
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The 17th century was a period of trade—and espionage—with China. The object of desire was porcelain, "white gold," and the secrets of its manufacture. This lecture looks at the Museums' collection of beautiful porcelain in historical context.