Johan Henrik Blom (Finnish, active 17661805)
Russian; Saint Petersburg
Parcel–gilt silver, enamel, ebonized fruitwood; (.1) H. 10 1/4 in. (26 cm); (.2) H. 8 1/8 in. (20.6 cm); (.3) H. 7 5/8 in. (19.4 cm); (.4) H. 3 3/8 in. (8.6 cm), Diam. 6 in. (15.2 cm); (.5) H. 4 1/8 x 4 3/4 x 6 1/4 in. (10.5 x 12.1 x 15.9 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1947 (126.96.36.199)
The service is thought to have been given by Empress Catherine II to Count Pyotr Rumiantsev, governor of the Ukraine and leader of the victorious Russian forces in the war with Turkey (176874). Enamel portraits on the utensils depict the imperial line from Peter the Great to Catherine II to her son, later Paul I. Facing are: Catherine II on the coffeepot, the empress Elizabeth on the teapot, the empress Anna on the bowl, Peter III on the cream jug, and Catherine I on the sugar-box lid. The shape and decoration recall silver utensils made in northern Germany, especially Berlin. German silver was highly esteemed in Russia, where a large German artistic community had influenced the transmission of Western forms since the time of Peter the Great. The goldsmith, born in Vyborg at the Gulf of Finland, might also have spent time in northern Germany during his journey years.