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Cup Plate: the “Argus”


Glass dish, approximately 3″ in diameter. The brig Argus was typical of Duxbury ships around 1820. The Argus was built by the Duxbury shipbuilders, the Drew family, at the Drew yard on the Blue Fish River. The yard was owned by Reuben Drew and the ship commanded by Joseph Drew in 1823. The Argus was 86 feet long and 23 feet at her beam; a small vessel, but she sailed to the Mediterranean at least twice! The image for this plate is based on a painting of the Argus from 1823 which shows her at the port of Marseilles. In 1824, the Argus was dismasted at Marseilles’ harbor entrance and was almost lost!

This type of crystal cup plate was used between 1832 and 1860 when the fashionable teacups were designed without handles. Hot tea was poured into the saucer to cool, while the cup was placed on a small plate like this one, to avoid staining the table cloth or damaging the table.


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Light green
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Light blue, Lapus blue, Light green, Emerald green, Pale yellow, Purple