Rare Sugar Bowl, Isleworth, soft paste porcelain, c.1770


This sugar bowl is printed in underglaze blue with a version of the Boy on a Buffalo pattern. The reverse is printed with sailing ships and a crane in flight. The interior base is decorated with a small printed floral spray. A diaper-trellis border is painted in underglaze blue inside the rim.


Provenance: The Susi and Ian Sutherland Collection; Private Collection, London.

Both the glaze and underglaze cobalt blue pigment of this piece have been tested using X-Ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy (XRF). The results, published in the English Ceramic Circle Transactions, vol. 28, 2017, reveal that the cobalt blue contains nickel. This is significant as 10 out of 10 of all confirmed Isleworth pieces contain nickel, as do all 36 of the possible Isleworth pieces tested. Compare this with the results for Bow, where no nickel is present in the cobalt blue pigment.

Condition: There is a 0.8 cm chip to the rim, from which issues a hairline. On the opposite side of the bowl is a shorter hairline. There is a small flat chip on the outer edge of the rim, a tiny nibble, also to the rim, and a small chip to the footrim. There is surface wear to the interior from use. No other damage or restoration.

Dimensions: Diameter 10.8 cm

Transactions, vol. 28 (English Ceramic Circle, 2017). See the entry for item no. 2015-04 104, page 22.

Isleworth Pottery and Porcelain: recent discoveries, compiled by Roger Massey, Jacqueline Pearce and Ray Howard (English Ceramic Circle and Museum of London, 2003). Illustrated on page 108.

Godden's Guide to Blue and White Porcelain, Geoffrey A. Godden (Antique Collectors' Club, 2004).


Click on thumbnail above to see larger image