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Charles II and Catherine of Braganza: C.207-1928

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


Charles II and Catherine of Braganza


Potter: Toft, Thomas




Earthenware, decorated with slip and lead-glazed: busts of a man and woman surrounded by a trellis border broken by a panel enclosing the name, THOMAS.TOFT

Earthenware, thrown, the front coated with white slip, and slip-trailed in two shades of brown under lead-glaze; reverse unglazed. Circular with a broad rim, deep sides, and almost flat centre. Decorated in the middle with busts of a woman with her hair dressed in ringlets and wearing a necklace and a crown, and a man with a long wig, probably Catherine of Braganza and Charles I. Above and between their heads is a rosette, and below, a winged motif. The sides of the well are decorated with a zig-zag slightly curved line forming triangles, and the rim has a trellis border, broken at the bottom by a rectangular panel enclosing the name THOMAS.TOFT


History note: J.E. Hodgkin Collection; Wilfred Harding, London from whom purchased on 13 or 15 September 1913 for £170 by Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge. The dish arrived in Cambridge on 16 October.

Legal notes

Dr. J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Depth: 7 cm
Diameter: 44 cm

Acquisition and important dates

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


Charles II
17th Century, second half#
Circa 1662 - Circa 1685


The couple on the dish may represent Charles II and his wife, Catherine of Braganza who were married in 1662, but the dish could have been made some years later. The slip-trailed trellis border is typical of these large dishes, but some examples have male heads, tulips, or rosette-like motifs.

Thomas Toft is the most famous of the seventeenth-century Staffordshire slipware potters, but very little is known about his life. He was probably the Thomas Toft who married in 1663, paid Hearth Tax at the village of Stanley in 1663, and 1666, and was buried at Stoke on 3 December 1689. Over thirty dishes bearing his name have been recorded but a few of them may have been made by his son, also Thomas Toft. What Toft senior made other than dishes is largely conjectural. Only four pieces of hollow ware bearing his name are known, among them a small jug in the Fitzwilliam Museum (C.1-1937).

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of slip ( white, pale brown, dark brown)
Front composed of lead-glaze

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Throwing (pottery technique) : Earthenware, thrown, coated on the front with cream slip, slip-trailed in pale brown, brown, dark brown, and cream, and lead-glazed

Inscription or legends present

  • Location: On front
  • Method of creation: Slip-trailing
  • Type: Maker's name

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.207-1928
Primary reference Number: 73072
Old object number: 3644
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Saturday 17 June 2023 Last processed: Tuesday 17 October 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2023) "Charles II and Catherine of Braganza" Web page available at: Accessed: 2023-12-06 17:06:04

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