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Hand Warmer in the Shape of a Book: C.1428-1928

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Object information

Current Location: In storage


Hand Warmer in the Shape of a Book


Pottery: unidentified London pottery (Probably)




White earthenware, tin-glazed, and painted in blue, turquoise-green, yellow and ochre. Formed as a book with two false clasps, the hand warmer has two compartments linked by a hole, and having a large approximately rectangular aperture in the top near the spine, and a small hole in the back top left corner. Both sides are painted with the initials and date 'EM/1663' within an oval loopy frame, and have a fleur-de-lys in each corner. The spine is painted with four horizontal stripes alternating with dotted flowerheads, and the fore-edge is painted in turquoise with slightly darker stripes to indicate the pages. The clasps are yellow.


History note: Purchased from Louis Gautier, Chelsea on 12 July 1927 for £15 by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, Trinity College, Cambridge.

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Depth: 4 cm
Height: 11.3 cm
Width: 7.9 cm

Relative size of this object

7.9 cm11.3 cm4 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

  • London ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

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


Third quarter of 17th century
Charles II
Production date: dated AD 1663


Probably made by a pottery in London, although the Brislington Pottery was also operating at this date

Components of the work

Decoration composed of high-temperature colour ( blue, turquoise-green, yellow, and ochre)

Materials used in production

white Earthenware

Techniques used in production


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: EM/1663
  • Location: Front and back
  • Method of creation: Painted
  • Type: Inscription

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1428-1928
Primary reference Number: 71986
Old object number: 4963
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Tuesday 6 June 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) "Hand Warmer in the Shape of a Book" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-06-09 07:52:39

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{{cite web|url= |title=Hand Warmer in the Shape of a Book |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2023-06-09 07:52:39|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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