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Mug: C.1229-1928

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Production: James Morley




Salt-glazed stone-ware incised and pierced with sprays of flowers.

Grey-coloured stone-ware coloured with brown slip and salt-glazed. The mug has a cylindrical neck and a globular body with double walls and a hollow base. There is a loop handle. The neck and handle are reeded and the outer wall of the body is incised with four plants, each with three stems and a range of different pierced shapes representing the flower heads.


History note: Provenance unidentified before Mr Sheldon, Manchester, who sold on 12 May 1925 to Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 9.9 cm
Width: 11.7 cm

Relative size of this object

11.7 cm9.9 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

  • Nottingham ⪼ Nottinghamshire ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

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


Early 18th Century
Circa 1700 CE - 1705 CE


A trade card dating from around 1700 and advertising the wares of “James Morley at the pothouse in Nottingham” includes an illustration of “A carved jug”, which is the same shape as this mug and is decorated with comparable, although not identical, pierced and incised floral sprays. This form of mug does not appear to have been exclusive to Morley and it is thought that many English potters produced items of this kind. It is therefore impossible to securely attribute a "carved jug" of this kind. However, the chocolate brown colour of the slip-coating and oily sheen of the salt-glaze on this mug are considered typical of Morley’s products, suggesting a possible Nottingham origin. There is a mug in the Victoria & Albert Museum of a similar brown colour which is inscribed ‘nott 1703’, lending further weight to the possibility the mug was produced in Nottingham.

The basic shape of this mug, with its bulbous body and thin neck, may have been inspired by contemporary silverware.

Components of the work


Materials used in production

brown Slip

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: stick-on rectangular white paper collector’s label

  • Text: “4593. Nottingham brown stoneware mug with pierced outer wall. From the Sheldon Collection. May 12, 1925.”
  • Location: On base
  • Method of creation: Handwritten in black ink
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1229-1928
Primary reference Number: 71626
Old catalogue number: 4593
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Tuesday 14 February 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 (2023) "Mug" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-06-06 07:24:46

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{{cite web|url= |title=Mug |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-06-06 07:24:46|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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