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Kingston Jug


Height: 28.500 cm

Roach Smith Collection

M&ME 1856,7-1,1566

Room 40: Medieval Europe

    Kingston Jug

    Medieval, late 13th century AD
    From Kingston, Surrey, England

    This jug was found in the nineteenth century in an old chalk well in Cannon Street, near London Bridge,during construction work. It takes its name from the medieval kiln in Kingston-upon-Thames, Surrey where it was probably made. It is highly decorated in a style which imitates French pottery and clearly demonstrates the influence of French tastes on English tableware in the thirteenth century.

    The rich variety of coloured glazes is achieved by the addition of iron (for brown/red), copper (for green) and lead (for yellow). The diamond-shaped panels, containing rampant lions (or dragons) alternating with dark green inverted chevrons, show both the imagination and technical diversity of the medieval potter.

    J. Alexander and P. Binski, Age of chivalry: art in Planta (Royal Academy, London, 1987)

    J. Robinson, Masterpieces: Medieval Art (London, British Museum Press, 2008)