Morley House Tea Leaf Reading Tea Cup

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The Morley House Tea Leaf Reading Tea Cup set
The Morley House Tea Leaf Reading Tea Cup set with box and booklet

The Morley House Tea Leaf Reading Tea Cup, released in 1992, was the only fortune telling tea cup and saucer created for and distributed by Morley House Direct Marketing in Australia. The bottom is stamped "Morley House Direct Marketing, © 1992, decorated in Australia by Westminster China."

The cup is a coffee can shape with elaborate full colour symbols inside and a further set on the saucer, as well as a magical poem around the outside of the cup. The cup stands about 2 1/4" tall and is about 3" in diameter. The saucer is about 6" across.

The symbols within the cup clearly derive from those just below the rim inside the 1904 Nelros Cup of Fortune, and are this, as well as the coffee can shape indicates that it is also related to the Jon Anton Taltos Fortune Telling Cup of 1975, the Royal Kendal Taltos Fortune Telling Cup of 1980, the Zarka Fortune Telling Teacup Set of 1985, and the Jane Lyle Cup of Destiny of 2001.

Unlike the Nelros Cup of Fortune family of cups and saucers, however, the Morley House set contains no astrological markings and is purely a symbol cup. Because the saucer on the Nelros Cup of Fortune family consists only of astrological markings, which are absent on the Morley set, the saucer symbol markings, which include a castle an owl, and a butterfly, are unique to this set. The central four-leaf clover on the saucer is an evident emulation of the shamrock image at the center of the saucer of the Zarka Fortune Telling Teacup Set of 1985.

The magical poem on the cup exterior, which is also a descendant from the the Nelros Cup of Fortune original, reads, "Maybe the leaves will disclose to thee, the future thous't would wish to see."

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catherine yronwode
curator, historian, and docent
The Mystic Tea Room

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