An Attractive Pair of Regency Period Black Japanned & Hand-Painted Pontypool Toleware Chestnut Urns c.1810-20


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Object Description

The exquisitely proportioned pair of chestnut urns, of classical form, each showing the original black japanned decoration, now with a superb patination, and with acorn finials, lion mask ring handles and flower painted decoration to each to include yellow hibiscus and red poinsettias, surviving from the first quarter of the nineteenth century and almost certainly, Pontypool, Wales.

Object History


Object Literature

Toleware refers to kitchen-related objects created from metal, typically tin or thin steel, and are often in decorative styles such as Arts and Crafts and Regency as we see here. Decorative painting on these items is common but is not always the case. This style of decorative art spread from Europe, where it was referred to as Japanning, to the United States in the 18th century. In the 19th Century, the towns of Usk and Pontypool in South Wales were well known for producing toleware goods, particularly using the Japanning process, as we see here.

N.B. See Shirley Spaulding DeVoe, The Art of the Tinsmith – English and American, Pennsylvania, 1981 Chapter 2, pp. 15-26 for a similar pair.

In desirable untouched condition; a very elegant pair of Regency finery.

Object Condition

There are minor faults apparent from the illustrations, paint scratches and wear with some paint fleck losses commensurate with use. There is some mis-shapening to the lids, though they still sit relatively well flush and a couple of small dents to the bodies. The urns essentially remain complete and un-meddled with, which is very appealing, with the black japanning having taken on a lustrous patina.

Object Details

Dealer Opening Times

By appointment only.

Dealer Contact

+44 (0)1767 640995
+44 (0)7729 213013

Dealer Location

The Onion Barn
Shoe Cottage
15 High Street
MK44 3NL

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