Tea tray, cake stands, jam dish, sugar bowls, coffee pot and milk jug, Martin Guillaume Biennais, c. 1817
This is not just any service. These objects belong to a huge coffee and tea service that originally comprised more than a thousand pieces. The Russian tsar Nicholas I bought it from the French silversmith Biennais in 1817. The pieces are double gilded, so they look like they are made of solid gold. The geometric shapes and type of rims are typical of the early Empire style.