Friday, September 23, 2016


I have written about recognition of the familiar before.   So I was happy that I immediately recognized the fox stealing a goose on a pattern posted by Rob Hunter on the British Pottery And Porcelain Discussion Group facebook page.

Shell edge plate printed with a fox carrying off a goose, ca. 1810

As the editor of the Animals Category for the Transferware Collectors Club database, I also knew the source print.  It is from "The Cabinet Of Quadrupeds" by John Church, which was published in 1805.

"The Fox" print is from "A Cabinet Of Quadrupeds" by John Church, 1805.

Look carefully on the right, and you'll see the fox making off with the goose.  The larger fox has already killed a hen, and the rooster is calling for help!   Now, take a look at how the source print was used by different manufacturers.

Enoch Wood & Sons (1818-1846) vegetable tureen from the Sporting Series, ca. 1825.  Here you only see the fox making off with the goose.
Job Meigh (& Son) 1805-1834 "Zoological Sketches" tureen lid.  Here, you see most of the source print.  But where is the rooster?

Plate, 5.5 inches, shows only the large fox, the rooster, and the dead chicken.

"A Present For My Dear Boy" child's 2 inch mug shows the fox carrying off the goose.  This seems like a unsuitable pattern for a young child.

John Hall (1814-1832) "Quadrupeds" basket. Only the fox and rooster were used.  No dead chicken! No fox in the background.

Thomas Elsmore & Son (1872-1887) 7.5 inch child's plate with a molded alphabet border. This pattern may be a much later interpretation of the source print.  I wonder if the manufacturer was even aware of the source.
One of my greatest transferware pleasures is recognizing patterns used by different manufacturers.  Such fun!

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