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Taurus the Bull: C.12-2000

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Taurus the Bull


Factory: Josiah Wedgwood & Sons
Modeller: Machin, Arnold




Creamware (Queen's ware), slip-cast in two halves, glazed, and decorated with lithograph prints in pink, yellow, dark brown, and grey, and painted in dark brown enamel. The stylised bull stands on all four feet with its head lowered and its tail waving against its left hind quarter. The body is scattered with vignettes of the zodiac signs and symbols in pink and brown or yellow and brown with grey backgrounds, interspersed with brown and yellow stars. The details of the bull's head and tail are painted in dark brown enamel, and round each foot is a band with a row of groups of three short strokes above it.


History note: Purchased from Gabor Cossa (Mr Martyn Edgell), Trumpington Street, Cambridge

Legal notes

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum

Measurements and weight

Height: 16.2 cm
Length: 40.2 cm

Relative size of this object

40.2 cm16.2 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • Barlaston ⪼ Staffordshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (2000-05-08) by The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum


Mid-20th Century
Elizabeth II
Production date: circa AD 1955


Designed and modelled by Arnold Machin, OBE, ARCA (1911-99 ) c. 1945-6. Wedgwood exhibited a Taurus the Bull Figure at the 'Britain Can Make It' exhibition in 1946. An example was displayed in the ‘Homes and Gardens’ pavilion at the Festival of Britain in 1951, in a modern sitting room for a farmer and his wife.

Multicoloured lithograph or 'Decal' (from decalomania) decoration was first used by Wedgwood in 1940 on a mug designed by Ravilious to commemorate the move of the earthenware section to Barlaston, and in 1944 for 'Charnwood' design on bone china tableware, see Documentation, Reilly, 1989. It had been used since the end of the nineteenth century elsewhere in the Potteries.

School or Style


Components of the work

Decoration composed of enamel ( dark brown)

Materials used in production

leadless ? Clear glaze
Cream-coloured earthenware

Techniques used in production

Slip casting : Creamware (Queensware), slip-cast in two halves, glazed, and decorated with lithograph prints in pink, yellow, dark brown, and grey, and painted in dark brown enamel

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: I C 55
  • Location: Under the left front shoulder
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark
  • Location: On the back of the front leg
  • Method of creation: Printed in dark green
  • Type: Mark

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.12-2000
Primary reference Number: 12091
Entry form number: 127
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 24 July 2019 Last processed: Sunday 21 March 2021

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Taurus the Bull" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-02-09 09:58:04

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{{cite web|url= |title=Taurus the Bull |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-02-09 09:58:04|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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