8-1/2" inch dark blue transfer plate, "Scaleby Castle, Cumberland," one of the Bluebell Border Series produced by William Adams of Staffordshire, England, during the early Nineteenth Century.
The earthenware body of the plate may be described as pearlware, because of the slightly blue tint to the glaze. The plate measures just under 8-1/2" in diameter and weighs 11.25 ounces.
The transfer decoration is a view of the 14th-15th century castle located in Cumbria, England, several miles from Carlisle. The pattern shows a facade of the castle with the figures of a man and a woman in the foreground. A dog can be seen running nearby.
There are several marks on the back of the plate. An impressed mark, which reads, "Adams Warranted Staffordshire," incorporates an eagle device similar to the one found on the Great Seal of the United States. According to Godden's Encyclopaedia of British Pottery and Porcelain Marks, a printed version of this design was used between 1804 and 1840. The number "33" appears in blue transfer, as does the name of the pattern, "Scaleby Castle Cumberland," framed by an oval cartouche edged in flowers.
Condition: well used but still very good for its age. The printed design is dark and sharp. There are several rather deep scratches within the well of the plate, but these are not noticeable except under close examination. There are areas of wear (friction, rubbing, a small amount of flake off) to the glaze, but no chips to the earthenware. There is one tight "crow's foot" crack in the center of the plate, which is visible only from the back and which appears to be stable. In general, the glaze is shiny and that, with the intense color, will make for an attractive display piece.
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