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Maker(s):Greatbatch, William (attributed to)
Culture:English (1735-1813)
Title:tea canister
Date Made:1765-1782
Type:Food Service
Materials:ceramic: lead-glazed cream-colored earthenware (creamware) with underglaze colored metallic oxides
Place Made:United Kingdom; England; Staffordshire; Fenton
Measurements:overall: 4 1/2 in x 3 1/8 in x 3 in; 11.43 cm x 7.9375 cm x 7.62 cm
Accession Number:  HD 56.088A
Credit Line:Gift of John B. Morris, Jr.
Museum Collection:  Historic Deerfield
1956-88at.jpg

Description:
With no Chinese porcelain protoypes to copy, British ceramic tea canisters of the 18th century took several different forms. They are mostly, however, square or octagonal with a wide cylindrical lip, and seem to derive from the japanned metal canisters used for displaying and dispensing tea and coffee in grocers' shops. By contrast, smarter tea canisters of glass or silver tended to copy the wooden tea chest, complete with its wavy metal edging and corners. Only later in the century was the little baluster-shaped canister copied by English porcelain factories (for example, Worcester) which imitated Chinese vase-like versions made solely for export. English creamware press-molded, cauliflower tea canister decorated with green glaze, attributed to William Greatbatch (1735-1813), which is part of a probably assembled set consisting of a teapot, coffeepot, cream pot, tea canister and waste bowl. Greatbatch was a well-known Staffordshire potter, who had also worked for Thomas Whieldon and Josiah Wedgwood as a supplier of molds and ceramic wares. The interest in the rococo style manifested itself in ceramics by embracing a naturalistic style for tablewares. Inspiration for these ceramics were drawn from fruit and vegetables such as apples, pears, cauliflowers, pineapples, and melons, which were favored by the Connecticut River Valley gentry during the third quarter of the 18th century. Samuel Boardman of Wethersfield and William Ellery of Hartford, Connecticut, were among the Valley merchants who imported these wares from New York ceramic merchants starting before 1770. The merchant, Samuel Smith of Farmington, Conn., described a cauliflower teapot as a "Califlower T Pot." With no Chinese porcelain protypes to copy, British ceramic tea canisters of the 18th century took several different forms. They are mostly, however, square or octagonal with a wide cylindrical lip, and seem to derive from the japanned metal canisters used for displaying and dispensing tea and coffee in grocers' shops. By contrast, smarter tea canisters of glass or silver tended to copy the wooden tea chest, complete with its wavy metal edging and corners. Only later in the century was the little baluster-shaped canister copied by English porcelain factories (for example, Worcester), which imitated Chinese vase-like versions made solely for export. The lower half of the body in green has distinctly molded long leaves, above which, on the body and lid, is the white cauliflower design. It sits on a flat base. The body has been once fired and then dipped into colorless and colored lead glazes. The Rococo style brought with it new excitement in ceramics and a focus on a naturalist form. The same period produced wares that resembled melons and pineapples as well. This was a product marketed to a higher more affluent customer.

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https://museums.fivecolleges.edu/detail.php?t=objects&type=ext&id_number=HD+56.088A

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