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Pierced bowl with floral decoration: C.8-1971

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Object information

Current Location: Gallery 27 (Glaisher)


pierced bowl with floral decoration


Pottery: Doulton & Co.
Designer and decorator: Butler, Frank A.
Decorator's assistant: Aitken, Mary
Decorator's assistant: Evans, Bertha
Decorator's assistant: Hurst, Jane (Possibly)




Salt-glazed stoneware bowl, with pierced, incised and applied decoration, and painted in shades of blue, green, brown, ochre and white.

Shallow bowl on a small foot. Richly decorated on the interior and exterior with incised foliate and scroll patterns, applied flowerheads and beads, coloured slips and underglaze oxide colours. There are four pierced sections towards the upper rim. The whole is salt-glazed, except for a rim around the inside base and the underside, which is flat.


History note: Purchased from Richard Dennis, 144 Kensington Church Street, London, W.8

Legal notes

Given by The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum

Measurements and weight

Diameter: 26 cm
Diameter: 10.25 in
Height: 12 cm
Height: 4.75 in

Place(s) associated

  • Lambeth ⪼ Middlesex ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1971) by Dennis, Richard


19th Century, Late#
Production date: AD 1880 : marked


Doulton and Co, founded c.1815, originally made utility ceramics, with some stoneware jugs and ornamental bottles. Henry Doulton introduced decorative stoneware and architectural terracotta at Lambeth in the mid 1860s; over the next 50 years, he employed some 400 artists, many of them Lambeth School of Art students. Doulton championed individuality, innovation and versatility, and his modellers and decorators used a wide range of techniques and decorative treatments in producing both unique, artist-signed, and limited edition pieces. From 1872 the business expanded into faience and in the 1880s opened a factory at Burslem, Staffordshire, where bone china and other wares were made. In 1901, Edward VII granted the Royal warrant to the factory. Stoneware production at Lambeth reduced after 1914, and ceased in 1956.

Frank Butler, originally a stained glass designer, overcame deafness to design many thousands of pieces for Doulton between 1872 until 1911. This piece is typical of his work, which often includes carving or forming the wet clay vessel into shapes and is notable for its originality and invention. As John Sparkes, Head of Lambeth School of Art, found: ‘a certain massing together of floral forms and an ingenious treatment of discs, dots and interlacing lines indicate his hand’. Butler often worked with several assistants. Mary Aitken worked at Doulton from 1875-94, Bertha Evans from 1881-87, and Jane Hurst from 1881-1914; all three are listed as senior Doulton ware assistants in 1882.

School or Style

Art Pottery

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration composed of oxide colours ( blue, green, brown, ochre, white)

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Salt-glazing : Salt-glazed stoneware, with incised and applied decoration, painted in brown, blue, green, white and ochre.

Inscription or legends present

Inscription present: circular seal with 'DOULTON LAMBETH', 1880 below

  • Text: DOULTON/LAMBETH/1880
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark
  • Text: FAB
  • Location: Underside of base
  • Method of creation: Incised
  • Type: Monogram
  • Text: 375
  • Method of creation: Incised
  • Type: Number
  • Text: MA
  • Method of creation: Incised
  • Type: Monogram

Inscription present: lower case

  • Text: e
  • Method of creation: Impressed
  • Type: Mark

Inscription present: large capital, with bottom of verticals splayed

  • Text: H
  • Method of creation: Incised
  • Type: Mark

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.8-1971
Primary reference Number: 76165
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Monday 18 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

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

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