Rare Wedgwood Polychrome Tankard
BROWNIES Designed by Daisy Makeig-Jones
Staffordshire England 1913
This early 20th century English polychrome pottery tankard or porter mug is a rare example of the pre-Fairyland Lustre work of Daisy Makeig Jones. The tankard stands 4-1/2 inches tall and measures 5-1/2 inches across the top including the handle. Creamware or creamy earthenware transfer printed in brown and hand painted (under the glaze) in highly colorful orange red caramel cocoa and green, with a grape leaf border trim and orange hand painted rims. The piece is marked with an impressed ‘WEDGWOOD’ mark, a printed ‘WEDGWOOD – ETRURIA ENGLAND’ and painter’s marks that reads C3548 and related symbols. The tankard depicts two highly colorful and whimsical images, one of a Brownies riding a goat – titled ‘Whoa Billy’.The reverse shows a brownie standing on a wine barrel toasting while holding a glass of wine. These imaginary characters, also known as sprites imps and gnomes originally invented by Palmer Cox (1840-1924) are merry elves who delight in playing harmless pranks and helpful deeds, working and playing while weary households sleep, never seen by mortal eyes. Mischievous but kindhearted, these characters starred in books, cartoons, and children's china and toys, becoming a childhood favorite for generations.
This tankard was designed by artist Daisy Makeig-Jones (1881-1945) who was famed for her Fairyland Lustre designs that she created in the 1930s, at the end of her career at Wedgwood. Best known for her fantasy lustre designs, she began work at Wedgwood in 1909 as a trainee paintress and became a staff designer in 1914. Her Brownies designs were first produced in 1913 under the Wedgwood Queensware banner.
The tankard is in great condition with a flake on the foor and no other chips cracks or repairs. A fantastic work of art designed to entertain children of all ages, 100 years ago. An extremely rare motif, part of a series of images of whimsical and naughty Brownies.
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