Bell-shaped mug

about 1760–62
Made at Worcester Manufactory (England)

Object Place: Europe, England


14.6 x 15.2 cm (5 3/4 x 6 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Soft-paste porcelain decorated in polychrome enamels

On View

Charles C. Cunningham Gallery (Gallery 247)





The mug was thrown on the wheel then refined on the turner’s lathe. The loop handle has a broad central rib. The glaze, which is bluish but paler than that of no. 79, is very fluid. It has pooled in the ridges of the handle and on the foot ring, as well as on the base inside the foot ring. The glaze was wiped from the bottom of the foot ring, but it refilled the margin at the juncture of the base and foot ring, the “pegging” line. The paste is pale celadon green by transmitted light.
The enamel decoration on the obverse consists of a large bouquet of garden flowers centered upon a full-blown pink rose, with a soft yellow tulip to the left. The other flowers are in orange, sepia gray, puce, and soft blue. There are many fine details in both black and self-colors to create the rounded forms of the blossoms and the lively turning of the leaves; the thorny rose stems are clearly indicated. To the upper right of the bouquet is an equally elaborately delineated butterfly, in puce and sepia; its sheer wings have fine detailing, including two circular “eyes” on one wing. A caterpillar at the base to the left of the bouquet is bristling with fine hairs. The bouquet is surrounded with smaller sprigs of yellow and blue flowers to the right, leaves above and below, and, to the upper left, a long spray of puce, bell-shaped flowers. On the reverse a sprig with an orange-red Chinese lantern is near the top, with four other sprigs with blue flowers; the sprig at the bottom left has very large leaves, obviously covering a major glaze flaw. At the upper left is a ladybug, and a puce and sepia butterfly, wings outspread and ornamented in purple and yellow, is at the lower right. On the shoulder of the handle is a Chinese knot motif in iron red, probably inspired by a Meissen model.


By 1955, Rita and Frits Markus; 1982, gift of Rita and Frits Markus to the MFA.

Credit Line

Gift of Rita and Frits Markus