"Indian" coffeepot


Tiffany & Company ( American, 1837 )

Attributed to

Edward C. Moore ( American, 1827 - 1891 )

c. 1874
more object details

General Description

In the early 1870s, Tiffany & Co.'s chief designer Edward C. Moore became fascinated with Near Eastern- and Indian decorative arts, which he not only collected but also emulated in his designs. This "Indian" coffee pot is one of the finest examples of American silver in that taste. The overall form is based directly on Indian water vessels characterized by bulbous bodies, elongated necks, and thin handles and spouts. Meanwhile, the intricate arabesque pattern of stylized rosettes and foliage that covers its surface is reminiscent of Turkish textiles and Iznik ceramics of the 16th century. On either side, a long, serrated leaf curves into a "C," the monogram of the original owner, Tiffany & Co. treasurer C. T. Cook. Evidently Tiffany & Co. was so pleased with this piece that they borrowed it from Cook for inclusion in their display at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia.

Drawn from

  • Kevin Tucker, Label text, 2002

  • Elizabeth L. Kerr Fish, "Edward C. Moore and Tiffany Islamic-Style Silver, c. 1867-1889," Studies in Decorative Arts Volume VI, Number 2 (Spring-Summer 1999): 51-52.

  • DMA Unpublished material.

Fun Facts

An illustration of the coffeepot in Tiffany & Co.'s display at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia was published in the December 2, 1876 issue of Harper's Weekly.

Web Resources

  • Metropolitan Museum of Art ~ Edward C. Moore was an avid collector of Near and Far Eastern Art, especially the metalwork of Egypt, Syria, and Iran. Learn more about Moore's collection, which he bequeathed to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in 1891 and 1908.
  • Victoria & Albert ~ Read "Style Guide: Influence of India."
  • Victoria & Albert ~ Read "Style Guide: Influence of Islam."