Saturday, 16 November 2013

Another early mudlark

Here's a few finds from my last mudlark. It was good to meet two other early mudlarkers Teri and Jason. This little transfer picture from the bottom of a  bowl was my first find. I believe brown was used in transfer ware from 1809.

Mudlarking Find: Transfer ware bowl bottom.
A bit battered and worn, but you can still make out the birds with open wings which decorate either side of this clay pipe from the nineteenth century. Apparently this design is called the spread eagle, although presumably referencing the stance rather than the species as the neck, beak and legs seem far too long for an eagle. 

By the mid nineteenth century there was a least one maker of iron tobacco pipe moulds in London, so the same designs were produced by different pipe makers across the county. This one was a popular 'type' and produced in many forms especially in Sussex.

The spine is perhaps the best preserved, the wing tips and tail feathers meeting the splayed run of leaves. 
Mudlarking Find: Spread Eagle Clay Pipe 19th C. 
There is a very distinctive pipe makers mark on the spur, which I haven't been able to match with a specific producer. 
Clay Pipe Star Makers Mark 19th C. 
A rather lovely hand painted tree, probably late 18th Century. 

This little object (around 2cm square) appears to be a small mould, not quite sure whether it is clay or stone. What was it for I wonder?

Mudlarking Find: Small mould?

I don't usually put up pictures off all the ceramic shards I squirrel away, but thought I would this week

Mudlarking Finds: Worcester Porcelain Dr Wall period 1751-1783
and the rest of them from left to right 
Bartmann Beard  and then a bit of Bartmann face German salt glazed stoneware 1550- 1700, black transferware
Delftware, Imari Porcelain from 1650, Westerwald Stoneware Lion probably around 1675.
Delfware probably from a drug jar 1600-1700, hand painted pratt ware colours, Westerwald 1675 and two other hand painted shards. 

and  find of the day, which was Jason's not mine, large (around 15cm in length) carved stone with what seems to be the remains of render or plaster. Is it medieval? One for the Museum of London to look at. 

Mudlarking find: Medieval carved stone? 

The reverse
Lastly my favourite, balanced on the tip of my finger, a very small  mudlarking china man 
Mudlarking Find: Mudlarking China Man


  1. thanks for including the little painted shards!!

  2. I think that small 2cm mould might be a small salt cellar!

  3. think that small mould could be part of a set of 4 musket ball moulds - I have one of these - found at Limehouse and am waiting for it to be identified at the Museum of London...will let you know what they say...

  4. Nice finds!! Fun to see others pickings.

  5. It was great to finally meet you on the foreshore. I like your photo of the carved architectural moulding. After I met you, I went to the Sir John Soane Museum for the first time. It's quite amazing being surrounded by ancient artifacts in an old Georgian mansion. There were numerous architectural mouldings too. Have you been to the museum? If not, I think you'd really like it. See you on the foreshore again soon!

    1. Sir John Soane Museum is on my 'things to do in London in the winter' list, I suspect I will really like it too, thanks for the reminder.

  6. Hi Julia
    That's a very nice pipe, a design that I've never managed to find.
    I had a quick look through some of my reference books and found a couple of examples apart from the one in LCTP, the first is a Sussex maker( as you mention) in another book by David Atkinson, Sussex CTP's and the makers
    This example of which there is a photo is made by Brighton maker Mary Goldsmith 1845-51, a slightly different style of bird to you're one, but equally un eagle like.
    The second is featured in BAR British series, The archaeology of the CTP,
    CTP's from London & THE SE, Richard Le Cheminant.
    this example which is drawn, looks similar to you're eagle, but has the word Union above the bird's head around the rim of the bowl.
    The author suggests this could possibly be a tavern, and union perhaps the location of it on Union St, this pipe has the initials I C.
    As for the mark on the spur, these also appear on 18th c pipes quite often as well as other symbols like harps or crowns, sometimes in addition to various initials, so unfortunately you won't be able to identify the maker.
    Hope this was of some help.

    1. Thanks Richard, I was hoping you'd comment, font of all clay pipe knowledge as usual.

  7. Wow! What beautiful finds! I covet that insect!

  8. Hi, I'm doing a research project regarding historic pottery in New Paltz, NY. We have a large portion of a plate where the clay body and glaze type is exact to the bottom left fragment in the picture with the bartmann beard. Do you have any more fragments similar to that or know of any historical context? The fragment we have has a foot indicative of Dutch style. Thanks!

    1. I suspect it's part of a delft drug jar. For pictures and then links you could look at my pinterest board on delft and my previous post on delftware good luck tracking down its history.

  9. The "small mould" looks remarkably like my little crucible for melting silver and pewter