Selected porcelain representative of the different production technologies used from the eighteenth to the twentieth century at the French Royal Manufacture, which became The Imperial Manufacture and now the Manufacture Nationale de Sèvres, were studied by non-destructive Raman macro- and/or micro-spectroscopy: French soft paste (‘pâte tendre’ or ‘frit ware’), English-like (bone China), the latest soft pastes made from glass (silica-rich soft paste, Vögt soft paste), and ancient hard (PDA) and new hard (PDN) pastes. Analyses were made directly on the glazed and unglazed regions of the bodies. The presence of a strong β-wollastonite and/or tricalcium phosphate peak makes it easy to differentiate a soft-paste body from a hard-paste body on Raman spectra. The different components of the spectra also allow the identification of the different types of glaze (with stannic, lead or boron oxide or feldspars as the main fluxing materials). Numerical analysis (2D correlation method) was applied to identify the glaze and highlight the relationship between different samples. Copyright © 2001 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.