England has been a district making pottery and porcelain since the 1700s.
Some of the most famous factories include Adams, Davenport, Ridgway, Royal
Doulton, Royal Worcester, Spode, and Wedgwood.
Many potteries were established in the
Staffordshire district of England in the early 1700s, and many are some
remain in operation today. The well known Staffordshire dogs were well
known subjects, but figurines and groups were made in large numbers. Sizes
ranged from perhaps 3" to the largest measuring up to about 20". The period
from about 1850 through 1900 was the high point of Staffordshire portraiture
on porcelain, representing many historical as well as fictitious personalities.
Staffordshire "Blue Ware" was produced from about 1820, much for export
to America and often decorated with scenic views of well known U. S. landmarks.
Early works were distinguished by the use of a very deep cobalt. By 1830
a softer blue was favored, and within the next decade black, pink, red,
and green prints were used. Although sometimes careless about adding their
trademark, many companies used their own border designs that were as individual
as their names.
English stoneware was made on a large scale
only after the late 17th century. The best of Staffordshire white salt-glazed
stoneware was made between 1720 and 1760. Staffordshire was also a centre
for creamware, a popular lead-glazed earthenware made of Devonshire white
clay mixed with calcined flint. In 1754 the English ceramist Josiah Wedgwood
began to experiment with coloured creamware. He established his own factory.
In Stoke, in 1800, Josiah Spode began the manufacture of porcelain ornamented
with designs inspired by eastern art, and his son, also Josiah, later mixed
kaolin, feldspar, and bone ash to make "bone" china.
The successful development of bone china by
the Spode factory at Stoke-on-Trent (1776-present), for wares of outstanding
beauty and economy in the Regency style of the early 1800s, ensured its
preeminence among commercial producers. Josiah Spode, a former apprentice
of the great Staffordshire potter Thomas Whieldon, and continued by his
son Josiah Spode II. He built up a highly successful business, first in
creamware (a delicate cream-coloured earthenware) and later (from 1784)
in pearlware (fine white-glazed earthenware) transfer-printed in blue;
his son, also trained as a potter, ran the firm's warehouse in London.Spode's
nearest rival was Minton (1796-present), outstanding in the Victorian period
for its "art" porcelains. Among Spode's chief followers in producing bone
china for the mass market were Davenport (c. 1793-1887); Wedgwood for a
short period between 1812 and 1822; Ridgway, New Hall, and Rockingham.
Josiah Spode 1733-1797
Josiah Wedgwood 1730-1795
Josiah Wedgwood was born in Burslem,
Staffordshire on July 12, 1730 into a family with a long tradition as potters.
At the age of nine, after the death of his father, he worked in his family's
pottery. In 1754 Wedgwood began to experiment with coloured creamware.
He established his own factory, but often worked with others who did transfer
printing (introduced by the Worcester Porcelain Company in the 1750s).
He also produced red stoneware; basaltes ware, an unglazed black stoneware;
and jasperware, made of white stoneware clay that had been coloured by
the addition of metal oxides. Jasperware was usually ornamented with white
relief portraits or Greek Classical scenes. Wedgwood's greatest contribution
to European ceramics, however, was his fine pearlware, an extremely pale
creamware with a bluish tint to its glaze.
Wedgwood's basalt, a
hard, black stone-like material was used for vases, candlesticks,
and realistic busts of historical figures. Jasperware, his most
successful innovation, was a durable unglazed work that was
most characteristically blue with fine white cameo figures inspired
by the ancient Roman Portland vase. Many of the finest designs
were the work of the British artist John Flaxman.
Ever been fooled by
a fake or a seller that didn't deliver the goods as described?
At Collectics, we authenticate and stand behind everything we sell, at
prices "30% below your local antique shop" according
to Collectibles Guide 2010. Please browse our main Antiques
& Collectibles Mall to find a treat for yourself or
a great gift for others, all with free shipping. Thanks for visiting and shopping at Collectics!
period Staffordshire porcelain on the Porcelain
& China and Fine Antiques pages. If you prefer, please use our convenient
or consign finer porcelain from Staffordshire, Meissen, Goldscheider, Sevres,
Limoges, and more at Collectics, where we earn our customers' trust everyday!
Read about our top performing national consignment program for estate and personal collections.