A Russian porcelain group "Sbiten Vendor"
Gardner Manufactory, Verbilki, 1870-1890
In the form of a Sbitenshchik or Sbiten Vendor, the base stamped in iron red and with impressed factory marks, impressed model number 146.
H: 7 3/8 in.
Ode to Joy Collection, Connecticut.
Pushkin Museum, no. 12
Oda k Radosti/Ode to Joy, pp. 44-45, illus. 22, cat. no. 5
The Sbitenshchik or Sbiten Vendor was a common sight on the streets of pre-revolutionary Russia. Sbiten is a warm drink made from honey, an ancient Russian beverage which lost its popularity to coffee and tea in the 18th and 19th century. The 1783 comic opera "The Sbiten Vendor" by Yakov Knyazhnin with a score by Antoine Bullant, was very popular in 18-19th centuries in Russia, and may have inspired the model.
Sold for $1,875 (buyer's premium included)