This is an antique absinthe saucer from the turn of the 20th century. Absinthe saucers served a dual purpose in the pre-ban absinthe era. Besides serving as a coaster, they also functioned to indicate the price of absinthe being served. The price was written on the inside rim or bottom of the saucer and was use to inform the customer the price of their absinthe. The price corresponded with the quality of the absinthe and the amount of absinthe being served (size of the glass). The coloring of the saucer also played an important role. When it was time for the waiter to tally the bill, he could simply look at the color bands which go around the rim of the saucer. When stacked, he could count the colored rims, as the color corresponded with the price written on the saucer. The money was generally left inside the coaster itself.
- Circa 1860-1915.
- Manufacturer's mark under saucer (see photo).
- Hand painted.
- Measures 4.9" (12.5 cm) in diameter.
- Sits .91" (2.3 cm) tall.
- Will accommodate a 3.15" (8 cm) glass base or smaller.
- Made in Paris, France.