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Summer: C.3035A-1928

Object information

Current Location: Gallery 26 (Lower Marlay)




Factory: Longton Hall Porcelain Manufactory
Proprietor: William Littler & Co.




Soft-paste porcelain with thick glassy lead-glaze. Summer is represented as a woman holding a sheaf of corn, standing on a shallow circular base decorated with applied leaves and flower heads. She wears a cloth over her head, a bodice with three-quarter-length sleeves, and an apron over a long skirt.

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 19.2 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Longton Hall ⪼ Staffordshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1928-12-07) by Glaisher, J. W. L., Dr


18th Century, Mid#
George II
Circa 1750 CE - 1753 CE


The glassy soft-paste porcelain of Longton Hall contained flint glass, ground flint, gypsum, limestone, and ball clay. The lead in the glass permitted it to fuse at a lower temperature, but also made it prone to warp or collapse during firing. This is shown by many warped waster fragments excavated on the site. For analysis, see M.S. Tite and M. Bimson ‘A technological study of English porcelains’, Archaeometry, 33, pt 1 (1991), pp. 3-27; Andrew Middleton and Michael Cowell, ‘Report on the examination and analysis of some porcelains from Longton Hall and West Pans’ in Bernard M. Watney, ‘Excavations at Longton Hall porcelain manufactory, Part 3: the porcelain and other ceramic finds’, Post-medieval Archaeology, 27 (1993), pp. 94-108. See also Barker, David and Cole, Sam., ‘William Littler at Longton Hall’, in the same authors eds., Digging for Early Porcelain, The Archaeology of Six 18th-century British porcelain Factories, Stoke-on-Trent, 1998, pp. 4-21, especially pp. 11-15.

The thick glaze on the early Longton Hall figures led to them becoming known as 'Snowman Figures'. This figure was one of a set of four 'Rustic Seasons', of which Winter is also in the Fitzwilliam Museum, C.3035B-1928. The woman holds a sheaf of corn, the attribute of Summer. When purchased in 1922 they were attributed to Bow. another example of Summer is in the Katz Collection at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

People, subjects and objects depicted

Materials used in production

presumed lead-glaze Lead-glaze
Soft-paste porcelain

Techniques used in production

Press-moulding : Soft-paste porcelain, moulded, and covered with thick bubbly lead-glaze
Glazing (coating)

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.3035A-1928
Primary reference Number: 133878
Glaisher MS Catalogue: 3938a
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Saturday 27 November 2021 Last processed: Tuesday 22 August 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Summer" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-10-05 01:01:58

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{{cite web|url= |title=Summer |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-10-05 01:01:58|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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