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Sugar bowl: C.1057 & A-1928

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Factory: Unidentified Yorkshire Pottery (Possibly)
Factory: Unidentified Staffordshire Pottery (Possibly)




Creamware painted with red and green enamels with flowers.

Pale cream-coloured earthenware painted overglaze with red and green enamels. The bowl is circular with deep curved sides and has an applied handle on either side. Each handle is formed from two interlaced ribbed bands with sprigged flowers at the terminals. The shallow dome-shaped lid has a flower knob. On each side of the bowl, a large rose-like flower is painted over the lead-glaze in iron red enamel and surrounded by leaves and other floral decorations. On the lid, either side of the knob are painted iron red floral sprays, each consisting of five flowers with decreasing numbers of petals. The knob and handle terminals are painted green.


History note: Provenance unidentified before 1901, when bought at Kissingen by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest.

Measurements and weight

Width: 12.6 cm

Acquisition and important dates

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


18th Century, Late
George III
Circa 1780 CE - Circa 1790 CE


The red flowers on this bowl belong to style of creamware decoration that was very common in the 1770s and was used by potteries across Staffordshire, Yorkshire and other parts of England. Little is known about the complex decorative practices of potteries at this time. For example, in many cases, it is unclear whether a pottery had in-house decorators and which sent its ware to be painted by outside specialists. Furthermore, professional decorators were capable of reproducing the designs of their peers, meaning that a particular ‘style’ of painting is not necessarily specific to one individual. The attribution of this bowl is therefore not possible on the grounds of its painted decoration. The handles, knob and terminals of the bowl pose similar problems of attribution. Traditionally, the rose-shaped knob and so-called ‘classic’ flower-and-leaf handle terminals were associated with the Leeds Pottery and knobs and terminals comparable, although not identical, to those on this bowl are illustrated in surviving Leeds pattern books and have been excavated at the Leeds factory. However, other potters clearly also used rose knobs and flower terminals; for example, terminals and knobs particularly close to those on this sugar bowl have been found at the site of William Greatbatch in Staffordshire.

Components of the work

Bowl, With Lid Height 11.7 cm
Bowl, Without Lid Height 8 cm

Materials used in production

cream coloured Earthenware

Techniques used in production

Painting overglaze

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: stick-on, octagonal white paper collector's label with blue border

  • Text: “Leeds sugar basin - painted over the glaze. Bought, I believe, at Kissingen in 1901. No.1263”
  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: Handwritten in black ink
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1057 & A-1928
Primary reference Number: 71242
Old catalogue number: 1263
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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Sugar bowl" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-04-13 15:01:23

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