Bicentenary Collection Frog service plate depicting Wilton Castle - 1995
Queen's ware, Catherine-shaped dessert plate from the Bicentenary Collection. 1995 saw the bicentenary of the death of Josiah Wedgwood and to celebrate this Wedgwood launched the Bicentenary Collection product range. This included a range of limited and unlimited edition pieces in bone china, jasper, black basalt and Queen's ware. In Queen's ware five individual pieces from the 1773/3 Frog Service for Empress Catherine the Great were re-created including this view of the ruins of Wilton Castle in Herefordshire.
Queen's ware, Catherine-shaped dessert plate from the Bicentenary Collection. 1995 saw the bicentenary of the death of Josiah Wedgwood and to celebrate this Wedgwood launched the Bicentenary Collection product range. This included a range of limited and unlimited edition pieces in bone china, jasper, black basalt and Queen's ware. In Queen's ware five individual pieces from the 1773/3 Frog Service for Empress Catherine the Great were re-created including this view of the ruins of Wilton Castle in Herefordshire. This was one of the limited edition pieces, with 3,000 being issued, although the number of the piece in the edition was not given with these items. The painted green line on the plate's reverse indicates that the piece is in actuality a second. The number 1195 on the plate's backstamp refers to the original catalogue of the service's views that was written by Thomas Bentley in 1774 for the Empress.
- Type of object: Dessert ware/plate
- Mark: BICENTENARY
J Wedgwood (signature)
VIEW OF WILTON CASTLE,
A REPRODUCTION OF A PIECE FROM THE "FROG" SERVICE,
COMMISSIONED BY CATHERINE II OF RUSSIA IN 1773-4
ONE OF A LIMITED EDITION OF 3000
MADE IN ENGLAND
© WEDGWOOD 1995
[Printed in black]
[Printed in pink]
- Year produced: 1995
- Body: Queen's ware, cream-coloured earthenware
- Glaze: cream
- Material: ceramic
- Decoration: lithographed
- Accession number: 13787
- Dimensions: 225 mm (diameter), 19 mm (depth)
Catherine II, Empress of Russia
Catherine II, Empress of Russia - Associated (1729 - 1796)
The daughter of the Prince of Anhalt-Zerbst, she married Peter, heir to the Russian throne in 1745. Her husband only reigned for a few months before he was murdered, and their son Paul I, was also assassinated. Catherine was exceptionally clever, and Josiah regarded her as his ‘great patroness of the north’. Catherine was a passionate anglophile purchasing from Wedgwood two services – the first in the ‘Husk’ pattern – which featured hand-painted botanical specimens hand-enamelled in mulberry pink – the second was a dinner and dessert service in Queen’s ware which was intended for the palace of La Grenouillière. Each of the 952 pieces bore the emblem or crest of a frog in green enamel, and the ware was decorated with 1244 ‘real views of Great Britain’ painted in a ‘delicate black’ – in reality a sepia tone. Wedgwood in a clever marketing ploy exhibited the service at his newly opened showrooms located at Portland House, Greek Street, Soho prior to its dispatch to Russia. The majority of the service has survived and can be seen at the Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg. Catherine went on to purchase Wedgwood jasper plaques, and other ornamental wares. The Scottish architect, Charles Cameron designed three suites of apartments for Catherine’s palace at Tsarskoe Selo – unfortunately the palace was destroyed during the siege of Leningrad.
Thomas Bentley - Associated (1731 - 1780)
Thomas Bentley was born in Scropton in Derbyshire, and was the son of a well-to-do country gentleman. He was educated at the Presbyterian Academy at Findern, and then indentured to a wholesale merchant in Manchester. He moved to Liverpool, and was introduced to Josiah I by Wedgwood’s surgeon, Matthew Turner. From this chance meeting grew a lifelong correspondence, friendship, and later business partnership. From August 1769 to Bentley’s death in 1780 the ornamental ware partnership with Josiah grew to huge proportions and was highly successful. After Bentley died, having lost his greatest friend and confidante, Wedgwood was inconsolable.
In 1765 Wedgwood provided a tea and coffee service to Her Majesty Queen Charlotte (wife of George III) in the new earthenware body he had recently perfected. She was so pleased with the set that she not only allowed Josiah to style himself ‘Potter to Her Majesty’, she also allowed him to call his new earthenware ‘Queen’s ware’ - a name by which Wedgwood’s cream coloured earthenware is still known today.
Seconds is slightly imperfect quality ware and generally refers to minor faults in the decoration. A 'seconds' item, however, must still be 'fit-for-purpose' and fulfill the role for which it was produced.There can be no structural faults with a 'seconds' item such as chips or cracks.'Faults' will not usually be obvious to an untrained eye.