A look at the design, market and legacy of Victorian pottery

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Cordial Pineapple

Since the 18th Century the pineapple has been a representation of hospitality. So much is this the case that the hospitality industry has formally adopted it as their symbol.

From Dunmore Park House to the Wimbleton cup, the pineapple is everywhere. It even made an appearance earlier this year on BBC's Downton Abbey as a serving piece in the servant's table!

It seems not only right but inevitable that it would appear in majolica as well.

The early Wieldon pineapple pieces were the first Western wares to attempt realistic pineapple depictions.

These full color attempts came to full flower with the creation of Victorian majolica. Made by every conceivable manufacturer from Minton to Jones to the Etruscan Works to the tiny Arsenal Pottery, pineapple themed majolica can be found on both sides of the Atlantic.

Of course Minton. GJ and Wedgwood made some of the most elegant pieces:

Smaller companies made charming pieces as well. Available in everything from comports to full tea services; syrups to platters; and simple tea kettles as well, there's plenty of variety to choose from.

From the New World there are pieces from Phoenixville and Trenton.

Pineapple majolica is plentiful and varied; the colors are lovely and the shapes pleasing to the eye. The prices have never been cheaper than they are right now so I would encourage anyone to bring home a little hospitality for less than the cost of a trip to the mall.

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