Saturday, February 15, 2014

To Project and Serve: A Barge Ware Teapot, 1870

Barge Ware Teapot
English, 1870
The Victoria & Albert Museum

This little teapot, though it puts us in mind of the ordinary brown British “Brown Betty,” is a rather special model. This pot has a depressed, bulbous body with a frilled rim, and a domed, wide lid which is surmounted by a flattened knop (decorative ornament). It is glazed with a streaked rich brown color which has been applied with cream-colored sprigs, and garlands, and with birds in shades of green, blue and pink. A sentimental cartouche with impressed, blue lettering reads, “A PRESENT TO A FRIEND.”

The work of Mason, Cash and Co., this pot with its rustic brown lead-glaze and applied decoration is known as “Measham ware” or 'Barge ware', and is associated with use on canal boats.


Anonymous said...

Hi Joseph,

I found you through my interest in Walter Wilkinson, but I love everything on your site! You REALLY make me want to go to to the V&A again soon (only an hour away from me). On the subject of Barge Ware, check out James Henry Pullen's design for Queen Victoria's State Barge:

I discovered it through a book about John Langdon Down's beautiful Victorian theatre at Normansfield in Hampton Wick, London.

Happy stalking,

Timothy James,

Joseph Crisalli said...

Thank you, Timothy! I appreciate the added information. I do hope you can get back to the V&A soon. Spend an extra hour there for me.