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ID some porclain found in the loft

Posted by ChristopherDI (My Page) on
Sun, Jul 17, 11 at 10:41

Recently we have been clearing out my deceased grandfathers house, and among a large amount of Denby pottery in the loft we have found some unusual items.
This is one of them, some kind of sugar pot maybe?

We love the design but it looks hand painted, and we would like to know more about it!

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Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

I can't see any size reference. It is definitely Japanese, by the mark and the fact that is Mt. Fuji in the background. I used to live in a house where you could see Mt. Fuji from our back yard.

Yes, probably hand painted, or at least with some hand detailing (you can feel the relief with your fingers and that type of detailing is called moriage) and that is likely a precious metal trim line on the lid.

Sugar is not part of traditional tea drinking, but ware manufactured for sales to occidental buyers would often contain a sugar bowl and creamer in coffee and tea sets. It may have been part of a set at one time. It could also be a tiny handled ginger jar for spice storage, but handles on pots or cups are not at all typical.

Cranes are a symbol of good fortune. Pretty little pot, and can't tell you more.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Ah, Thanks a lot!
just measured it its about 14 cm high.

And well we seem to have found a bit more of it as well, not just that pot.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

That ups the ante and may make it more identfiable. What additional pieces did you find?


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Doesn't look like moriage to me....that term describes ware that is decorated with applied slip not just with paint....but perhaps I am not seeing all of the relief.
As Suzy said...made for export...or sale as a souvenir, likely the first half or the 20th century.
Japanese marks are hard, because except for a few firms, they cavalier about marking porcelain. The marks may be of the pottery, the decorator, the area where the pottery is etc. And other pieces of the set may have different marks....which may be more easily identifiable.
I think it's very nice!


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

The top character (upside down in the picture btw) is pretty difficult to read. It's kind of like trying to read a Dr's signature :-) Any chance any of the other pieces have a more defined upper character?

That being said, it looks like "koda". It could be "ri", but that doesn't make much sense. The bottom character can also be read as "den", although, that's pretty rare. If it IS koda, and it's a family name, then it can also be read as "Sakita" or "Yukita" and would have originated in the western side of Honshu (main island). Roughly translated it means "rice paddy's of happiness". "rida" would make it "political rice paddy" which doesn't seem to fit. lol

I can also reinforce what Calliope said about the handles and the sugar bit. Japanese didn't incorporate handles in their pottery, and even if there were a sugar container (very rare), it would have been more like a half height cup with a lid, not a large rounded container.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

No Linda........there is all sorts of moriage and enamel moriage is very common in Japanese pieces immediately post war. It's much cheaper to produce and some of the smaller detail moriage is better accomplished in that manner. I have many pieces of enamel moriage. Not necessrily made for export and I didn't say that, but made for occidental tastes. May have been picked up in Asia by one of the thousands and thousands of foreigners who lived there as it was building a post war economy. If it were imported in that timeframe, it would be much more likely to have a mark in English. I suspect that the age is in that era and that's why I sort of wanted to see any accompanying pieces to see what style cups and such were. It's not a fool-proof dating method but it can get you to a ball park.Yes......the other pottery may have different marks and still be the same set. I have Bavarian china where this is not unusual.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Well thank you all,(and thank you for letting me know, if any of the other pieces have more identifiable markings I'll post them the right way round thins time!)
At the last count according to by better half.(There are stacks of boxes up there.)

1 teapot
1 Some kind of bowl, Finger bowl?
2 Largish plates
10 smaller Plates
10 Saucers
10 cups

tomorrow when I get access to them I will photograph some more and look for better maker marks.
If there is anyway you can suggest of giving you a better idea of the decoration, please let me know.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

I sure do love those cranes. Looking forwards to the photos of the rest of it!


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Sounds like you have a tea set or snack set, with plates for serving cookies and biscuits, individual plates, cups, saucers, teapot sugar bowl, or perhaps biscuit jar ( I don't know how big the pot is) and a slop bowl.
Made not for the Japanese, but for the "Tea and biscuits" crowd...I'll bet the cups have handles.
I believe it's considerably pre-war. I see no enamel moriage but for possibly the dots on the sunflowers. It's hand painted but not hand thrown. ( I am trying to think of all the descriptive words I can) gourd shaped, Platinum decorated (?? maybe gold?) has a glazed foot, 2 handles and a domed lid........and a mark no one can read...???? LOL!
can't wait to see the rest of the set....and what else is in the attic!
Linda c


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

OK, sorry it has been more than a day, but there were some errands to run.
I have some background on the porcelain, I asked my grandmother what she new of it, apparently it was given to my grandfathers father as a wedding gift from a ship captain friend of his (he was one of the head riveters at Liverpool dock)

Not sure if that helps.

Anyway, after carefully unpacking the box we found that two of the cups were broken, but we had an extra saucer.
I took a picture of the all together with the tea pot in the center (the tea caddy, / sugar bowl thing I showed first off is not in the group photo.
And hopefully there are enough maker marks from the bottom (this time the right way around!) for you to get a clearer picture.

Group Picture

The saucers are all along the bottom, the two big plates, bowl and tea pot are in the center, with the smaller plates around the edge.

This is the teapot

The bowl

Examples of some of the plates


And a collection of the makers marks, hopefully they will show what is needed!







And finally a picture of the unfortunate broken cups.

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Hope this helps!


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

I'm surprised at the daintiness of those cups. (I don't know why I am!)

It looks like the same mark on everything doesn't it? A little less tidy on some but the same.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Yup. Same mark on all of them... and MUCH easier to read now... but looks like two different people marked them. One fairly well educated, and the other... not so much. lol Possibly illiterate. The stroke order is wrong, and a couple of places it looks like they went over it twice. Interesting!

It says "Nishida". (western rice paddy) Possibly from Western Honshu or Okinawa.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Well if it were given as a wedding gift to your great grandfather on his wedding, that obviously sets up a time frame of at least how old it is, but doesn't preclude it may be older. No, the moriage work, like I said, was often used to add detailing. It was common post war, but may be found anytime. Some enamel moriage dates back centuries.

You probably need, as with so much oriental ware, to find someone well versed with it to appraise it. I don't know your age, Christopher.....so I can't guess when your great grandparents were married. 30s? 40s? 50s? 60s? That's a helpful place to start figuring out era of production.


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Well, considering Christopher's grand father has died, and assuming he lived to a ripe old age, I would assume his great grandfather was married in the early years of the 20th century.
I suspected it was made for the British market...
In the link I posted, the best site I have found for information on Japanese and Chinese porcelain, scroll down to the section on dai nippon hand drawn....and see a pot echoing the shape or your tea pot and lidded bowl.

Here is a link that might be useful: Marks


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Well, my grandfather was 90 when he died last February, and from what I can make out he was the middle of three children.
It must have been before WW1 when my great grandfather married, because I remember grandfather telling me how his mother was so grateful he was not sent to the front due to him being to important in his work to be risked.

Lindac, thank you very much for the link! I cant find what you meant, but I have only take a brief glimpse at it so far and will probably have to sit down and go through it.

Now i just have to find someone in Derbyshire England to possibly have a look at it!


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RE: ID some porclain found in the loft

Take references with a grain of salt. The gotheborg link has some great information, but the section, "Dai Nippon (Great Japan) hand drawn marks (Meji period 1868-1912)" is quite bogus in my book. They are citing "dai Nippon" marks with photo examples where it clearly does not actually say that. Every example of the use of the "dai" kanji is not, by default, followed by the kanji for "Nippon".

It tends to make occidental information seem suspect.


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