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Antique of the Month

PUBLISHED: 17:51 16 February 2014 | UPDATED: 17:51 16 February 2014

Rare 18th-century teapot

Rare 18th-century teapot

Archant

Tony Pratt of The Canterbury Auction Galleries unwraps three mid-18th century teapots

They arrived like so many of the objects sent to us for sale, wrapped in newspaper among a jumble of pieces of pottery and porcelain, most of which was of little consequence. The exceptions were three mid-18th century teapots, the quality of which was unmistakeable.

Two were rare examples of painted creamware, a glazed earthenware developed by Josiah Wedgwood, the father of English ceramics, in about 1760. Probably by William Greatbatch (1735-1813), another great Staffordshire potter, one was decorated with a scene of Aurora, goddess of the dawn, in her chariot, and, appropriately, the sun rising behind a landscape, the other with The Fortune Teller and The XII Houses of Heaven.

Recognising their quality, they were estimated at £300-500, but we were surprised when they sold for £880 as each was badly damaged, but we were delighted when the third teapot sold for £1,650.

Probably by Thomas and John Wedgwood, sons of the great Josiah, and made in about 1755-1760, the salt-glazed teapot was finely enamelled with oriental figures in a landscape, reflecting Europe’s growing fascination with the East. For Wedgwood, best known for its blue and white pottery, the piece also represents perhaps the potter’s best efforts to emulate the perfection of Chinese porcelain.

For sellers, its success underlines how important it is to seek help before disposing of unwanted antiques and works of art. Free expert advice from us is a phone call away: please call Chris Wacker on 01227 763337.

M

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