This is a modern version of a seventeenth-century tulip vase, also called a Delft pyramid or flower pagoda. The tulip vase is one of the most striking and unusual products of the Delft blue china industry.
We owe this particular model, with its many levels to the happy marriage of William III, Prince of Orange and King of England from 1688 to 1702, to Queen Mary. They both loved gardens, flowers and Delft blue china and many flower pagodas were designed for them by the famous artist Daniel Marot and produced by ‘De Grieksche A’, a well-known china factory in Delft. Often more than three feet high, these expensive and decorative structures brought the gardens into their apartments at Hampton Court Palace, where they lived, and reminded them both of the beauty of the flowers of Holland. The shape of the pyramids and pagodas was associated with classical and Eastern civilisations and symbolized the status and authority of the monarch.
The concept of these intricate vases with little spouts to hold single flowers or small bunches, may have originated in Persia; they became very fashionable in seventeenth-century Holland and England. The rage for the Delft pyramids spread from William and Mary to their courtiers, many of whom had stately homes in both England and Holland, and their favourite English furniture and Dutch china moved with them from house to house. In England tulip vases can be found in stately homes, such as Dyrham Park and Chatsworth House. In the Netherlands there are vases in the royal palace of Het Loo, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam and in other museums.
With this kit you can build your own flower pagoda. Start with the feet and put these in the place where you would like the vase to be positioned. Once filled it is not easy to move the vase.
Build the lower level, which is the biggest, first and fill it half full with water. Then build the next lagest level and also fill it half full with wather. Go on building all levels until you reach the pinninacle. Fill all the little spouts with your favourite flowers.