Teapot from the Burns' household (1)

This teapot, in the Romantic style, was used by the Robert Burns household during the time they lived in Burns House, Dumfries.  Jean Armour, the poet's widow, continued to live in the family home following his death in 1796.  She remained there for the rest of her life and by the time of her own death in 1834, the house had become a place of pilgrimage.  Relics of Robert Burns, Jean Armour Burns and their household were treasured and preserved.   Part of the attraction of tea drinking lay in the beautiful and delicate equipment it required.  With the rise of the Romantic Movement in the 1820s potteries began producing flamboyant designs with swaggering, curving shapes.   Although the custom of drinking tea dates back to the third millennium BC in China, it was not until the mid 17th century that it first appeared in Britain.  Portuguese and Dutch traders were the first to import it, but as it gained in popularity, the sale of ale and gin declined, and so did government tax revenue.  In response the government began to tax tea, and by the mid 18th century this duty had reached 119%.  This level of taxation had the effect of creating a whole new trade - tea smuggling.
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height 210mm, width 121mm
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ceramic, porcelain
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Dumfries & Galloway Council
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