Specially-Marked Commemoratives

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1939 Royal Visit to Canada commemorative set

Commemorative fortune telling tea cups and saucers are a small but disctinct class of cups. In addition to being ornamented with indicators to be used in some form of cup divination, hey are also marked -- usually, but not always -- in the well of the saucer with some text that relates to a specific event. They are, in sort, souvenirs of the place and time that they were purchased, a well as functioning as tools of tasseomancy.

In some -- but not all -- cases, the purchaser may have been able to aquire the same fortune telling cup, in terms of shape, ornamentation pattern, and tasseomantic images, both with and without the souvenir or commemorative text. This is particularly true of Aynsley cups made for the British Empire Exhibition at Wembley.

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

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