The dining room
This room looks out over the Bay of Villefranche and would probably have been the bedroom of Maurice Ephrussi. Even though he and Béatrice were separated in 1904, he found it convenient to keep a room at the Villa. Today, this room has been fitted out as a dining room. This room and the next house Béatrice’s collections of French porcelain, considered to be one of the richest in France, if not the world. She got her taste for porcelain from her father Alphonse, who was a great enthusiast and collector.
All the porcelain in the dining room comes from the royal Sèvres Manufactory near to Paris, the successor of the Vincennes Manufactory created by Louis XV.
In this room...
The “musical score” service Typical of the 18th century, this white dinner service is bordered with flowers and arcades and decorated in the centre with a trophy of musical instruments.
The skeleton clock in the shape of a lyre. This model in pink was highly sought-after at the end of the 18th century. An example could be found at the Palace of Versailles.
The Bourdaloue vases. These lapis-lazuli vases bear the name of a brilliant Jesuit preacher, famous for having preached to Louis XIV and the court, who nicknamed him “king of preachers, preacher to the king”. The name of these vases is certainly an ironic allusion to the length of his sermons, which must have punished the bladders of the female members of his congregation. These vases, placed discretely under the petticoats, were used to urinate in.
Vases with ringed panels, known as “vases ferrés” These were produced at the Sèvres Manufactory in about 1765-1770, during a period when new shapes and ornamentation were appearing that were inspired by Antiquity. Set against a “new blue” ground, there is a main plate depicting pastoral scenes painted in the style of engravings inspired by the paintings of François Boucher.