|A favourite find, delftware pottery approx 4cm with childlike design|
|Tin glazed dish 1571-1800 Museum of London|
‘Delftware is a type of earthenware characterised by its opaque white enamel glaze, made from a mixture of tin and lead ash, powdered glass and water.Before the development of this revolutionary enamel, British potters had been severely restricted in terms of decoration by the drab browns and greens of the clays they used. The clean white finish of Delftware allowed them to paint patterns, landscapes and portraits for the first time.They painted their naive designs in bright colours derived from various minerals - cobalt blue was the most widely employed, although copper green, manganese purple, iron red and antimony yellow were also used.’
|Polychrome delftware shards found mudlarking on Thames foreshore|
|English Delft Polychrome Dish 1675-1700, Christies|
|Delftware, some with manganese purple found mudlarking on Thames foreshore|
In the 18th century tea bowls, pots, cups and saucers were made. They were the possessions of the middle classes, status symbols, shown off in the best rooms rather than kept in the kitchen.
In the latter part of the 18th century, Josiah Wedgwood promoted his more industrially produced tableware, which chipped less easily and was decorated in the new classical style, the public responded eagerly and delftware went out of production by the early 19th century.