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White ‘Castleford-type’ teapot: C.1275 & A-1928

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


White ‘Castleford-type’ teapot


Unidentified factory
Production: Chetham & Woolley (Perhaps)




White felspathic stoneware teapot and cover with moulded body and applied reliefs, smear glazed.

Castleford-type teapot with ovoid body, a short oval galleried neck with diamond shaped rim and an S curved spout. Reeded loop handle, squared at the top to form a thumb-rest. Smear glazed inside and outside. The sides of the body, formed with ten flat panels above a slightly concave ribbon, are translucent. The base ribbon is decorated with curving, upstanding leaves. On one central panel two winged figures, one carrying a staff, hold a mirror above a naked figure which rests on a shield and holds a cornucopia. On the other, six peasants wearing caps are gathered around a barrel, one holds a book, another plays bag-pipes. On either side of each central scene is a narrower panel with a vertical ivy spray. On the shoulder, stylised acanthus hang down from the gallery, which is moulded and cut to a design of repeating square diamonds.The cover is also formed of ten panels; it is domed, with radiating curved leaves beneath a flower finial, and has two vent holes. The interior has a domed strainer at base of the spout. The underside is unglazed and slightly recessed, giving a narrow foot-rim.


History note: Bought on 30 June 1905 from Mr Phillips of Hitchin by Dr Glaisher, Trinity College, Cambridge, price 12/6d (twelve shillings and sixpence)

Legal notes

Dr. J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest, 1928

Place(s) associated

  • Longton

Acquisition and important dates

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


George III
Circa 1790 CE - Circa 1810 CE


Dr Glaisher found this teapot attractive for the 'soapstone-like texture of the body, the sharp frieze around the lid and the absence of the blue line' and also noted the moulding of the spout. The handle, finial and semi-translucent body of this example confirm that it was not made by Dunderdale (see Cox). The peasant scene, probably taken from a contemporary print, is also to be found on C.1277 & A-1928. These two teapots may thus come from the same maker; they also have similarly modelled finials of a design which could perhaps link them to Chetham & Woolley. However, variations between different factories were often slight and popular sprig moulds were sometimes copied. The other scene has been variously identified as Flora, Cupid and Prudence or the marriage of Cupid & Psyche (Rachkam, Edwards Roussel).

The Castleford Pottery in Yorkshire, run by David Dunderdale & Co. from 1790 to1821, was renowned for its white felspathic stoneware, and thus teapots from this material have become known as ‘Castleford-type teapots’. However, other factories made similar wares, including Sowter & co of Mexborough in Yorkshire and Chetham & Woolley of Longton in Staffordshire. Examples are typically plain white or white with edges lined in blue or another colour, or black basalt. The smear-glazing makes the most of the crisply-moulded ornament, whilst the stoneware would be durable in an everyday setting. The teapots are moulded in two parts, with applied handle and sprig decoration, and may have a drop-in, sliding or hinged cover. There are four examples in the Fitzwilliam Collection, of which two have sliding lids and two have added blue lining.

Components of the work

Decoration composed of clear glaze

Materials used in production

white felspathic Stoneware

Techniques used in production

Press moulding : Press moulded white felspathic stoneware, sprig decorated and smear-glazed

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: No 2295 Castleford teapot of white transparent stoneware with subjects moulded in relief. Bought at Hitchin June 30, 1905.
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Rectangular paper label handwritten in black ink
  • Type: Label

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1275 & A-1928
Primary reference Number: 71712
Old object number: 2295
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 15 January 2024 Last processed: Friday 16 February 2024

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "White ‘Castleford-type’ teapot" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-07-23 13:08:13

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