Sunday, July 5, 2015


I owned a jug printed with this pattern in the early '90s.  I thought it was amusing.  Now, I wish owned the machine that grinds old women into young!

Mug "Good lack how wonderful to view it/I neer believd it till I knew it/Come here ye toothlefs lame & Gray/Come and be Ground without delay"
The pattern was copied from a print by George Cruikshank (1792-1878), the English caricaturist famous for his illustrations of "Doctor Syntax,"  "The Bottle," and "Uncle Tom's Cabin." (All of these illustrations, by the way, are found on pottery.)

George Cruikshank "The Wonderful Mill" circa 1805 (when he was about 13)

"The Wonderful Mill" was quite popular on pottery.   The pattern is basically the same, but in a few examples there are young men greeting the rejuvenated women.

Mug, "Good lack a day cries out the grinder/I shan't find work, indeed I find sir/This grinding is a bonny trade/my fortune shortly will be made."

"Old Women Ground Young" Jug, same verse as above, but the print is a bit different

A slightly different print of "Old Women Ground Young"/No text

My birthday three years ago/My wish didn't change anything! I continue to grow old.  But, as my father used to say, "it is better than the alternative!"

For more information about "The Wonderful Mill," see the blog post "The Wonderful Mill in full vigour" in the blog The Printshop Window - Caricature & Graphic Satire in the Long Eighteenth-Century.

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