A Baddeley-Littler Tea Bowl and Saucer, circa 1777-85

Manufactured in Shelton, North Staffordshire, this tea bowl and saucer are decorated with a Chinese export style pattern, using purple, puce and orange enamels, with tiny dabs of green. Both pieces are painted with a border of feathery scrolls and stylised flowers surrounding a starburst design.

William Littler was connected with the Longton Hall manufactory in Staffordshire from 1750-60, before going on to produce porcelain at West Pans, near Musselburgh in Scotland. After 1777, it is likely that Littler returned to Staffordshire where he began to produce porcelain with Ralph Baddeley, although the enterprise was relatively short-lived.

Baddeley-Littler porcelains do not fit into the usual porcelain groups of the period as it is not of the hard paste type, nor does it have a soapstone or bone-ash body. It is a glassy soft paste frit porcelain with a high lead content, similar to that of the earlier Longton Hall wares.

Condition: No cracks or restoration. There is a tiny flat chip to the outer edge of the tea bowl rim, and some roughness to the foot rims of both pieces from manufacture. The saucer foot rim has a few tiny chips. The underside edge of the saucer shows the typical misfired glaze which led to these wares being known as the ‘Dirty Bottom Class’ before they were identified as Baddeley-Littler.

Dimensions: Saucer – Diameter 12.5 cm

Staffordshire Porcelain, Geoffrey Godden, Ed. (Granada, 1983).