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Beer jug with hop and barley decoration: C.6-2002

Object information

Current Location: In storage


Beer jug with hop and barley decoration


Production: Minton & Co.




Earthenware jug, relief-moulded, slip coated and lead-glazed

Beer jug. Relief-moulded buff earthenware, the interior slip-coated in white and the whole covered with very slightly bluish-grey tinted glaze. The jug has an ovoid body with a short cylindrical neck, and projecting spout, moulded in two halves. The handle is in the shape of a tapering hop branch which extends on each side of the neck into relief spray of hops and ears of barley corn. The lower part of the body is gadrooned. The underside is slightly recessed and glazed.


History note: Purchased by the donor from an antique shop in Catford, c.1950.

Legal notes

Given by Mrs Valerie Kessels

Measurements and weight

Height: 17.0 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Stoke ⪼ Staffordshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (2002) by Kessels, Valerie, Mrs


19th Century, Mid#
Production date: AD 1848


Relief moulded jugs were popular in mid 19th Century homes. The smear-glazing makes the most of the way that colour-stained clays show off crisply-moulded ornament, whilst the stoneware would be durable in an everyday setting. There are several examples in the Fitzwilliam Collection. This jug’s hop and barley design indicates its function as a beer jug.

The Society of Arts, founded in 1754, ran its first competition for arts and manufactures in 1846. Encouraged by Henry Cole, Herbert Minton submitted two beer jug designs, winning a silver medal for pattern number 268, a white stoneware jug with a blue stained neck and a relief moulded frieze of hops and barleycorn in white. The design was registered in May 1846. This buff earthenware version, no.279, bears the impressed year cipher for 1848. The jug was also produced in white and olive colours and in a Parian version (no.319) with a perforated filter before the lip and a lid.

This is one of the earliest examples of ware carrying the Minton name (here ‘M & Co.’), as identification of the factory was required for the competition. The business was founded in 1793 at Stoke-on-Trent by Herbert Minton’s father, originally producing transfer-printed earthenware and, from 1797, porcelain. Having traded under various names, from 1845 it was known as ‘Minton & Co.’ and from 1873 as Mintons Ltd.

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of lead-glaze
Handle To Spout Width 16.5 cm

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Relief-moulding : Earthenware, relief moulded, slip-coated and glazed.

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: 'M & Co' on separate section of ribbon

  • Text: Society of ARTS/PRIZE JUG 1846 / M & Co
  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: Moulded in relief on a ribbon
  • Type: Mark

Inscription present: script 'M', on separate section of ribbon

  • Text: No. 279 / M
  • Location: On base, on a relief ribbon with ornamentation
  • Type: Mark

Inscription present: lozenge shaped Patent Registration Mark for 2 May 1846

  • Location: On base
  • Type: Mark

Inscription present: two dots linked by a line

  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark
  • Text: 12
  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.6-2002
Primary reference Number: 47104
Entry form number: 167
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Wednesday 13 December 2023

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 (2024) "Beer jug with hop and barley decoration" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-06-21 17:46:03

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{{cite web|url= |title=Beer jug with hop and barley decoration |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-06-21 17:46:03|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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