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FABRIQUE DE MONSIEUR, A CLIGNANCOURT CHINA 1771-?
HISTORY. Pierre Deruellc established an hard paste porcelain factory at Clignancourt in 1771, and apparently carried on work there for three or four years without official authorisation. In 1775 he sought government recognition for his enterprise and gave the required notification to the authorities at Sevres. At this time he likewise secured the interest of Monsieur, the King's brother, as patron along with the right to style his factory "Fabrique de Monsieur."
De Moitte became the director of the works and a very considerable output of excellent chinaware was made, the factory continuing in active operation until after the Revolution. Indeed, so admirable was the quality of the porcelain in body and glaze, and of such superior character were the gilding and the painted decorations, that the wares could well hold their own in comparison with the work of Sevres. As a matter of fact, a number of pieces were decorated in the fashions reserved by royal edict to Sevres, and marked with the crossed and interwoven L's of Sevres beneath a prince's coronet.
This led to a police investigation, the seizure and confiscation of the pieces so decorated and marked, and the imposition of an heavy fine upon Deruelle. The authorities had no inclination to mitigate the rigours of the law, for the pieces in question were so good that they could readily be mistaken for the work of the royal factory. The contours, the decorations and the gilding of all the chinaware made at the Fabrique de Monsieur were in the Neo-Classic style that dominated the period.
The mark borne by the earliest china produced by this factory was a windmill. After Monsieur became patron, a monogram composed of his initials, L.S.X., was painted in red on the glaze, sometimes with the addition of a prince's coronet above it. Other marks also occur the interwoven initials of Monsieur including a D, a D beneath a prince's coronet, and an M beneath a coronet, all three were used and applied in red or gold on the glaze.