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Grigsby, Leslie B. (Leslie Brown) / The Longridge collection of English slipware and delftware. Delftware
Volume 2 (2000)

Apothecary tiles,   pp. [458]-460


Page [458]

 
DELFTWARE / Apothecary and 
               Hygiene-Related Wares 
Apothecary Tiles 
D410. APOTHECARY TILE 
London 
Dated 1664 
L. (tip-lobes): 9 1/4" (23.5 cm); 
W.: 7 5/8" (19.4 cm); 
D.: 7/8" (2.2 cm) 
BODY CLAY: Pinkish buff. 
TIN GLAZE: White with dense gray to 
brown speckling and medium crazing. 
Overall 
SHAPE: Rolled out and cut to shape, 
or possibly shaped in a tile mold. 
Pierced with two holes before firing. 
Two fragments of other pots or furni- 
ture, one 3/4" (1.9 cm) and one 11/2" 
(3.8 cm) long, adhered behind one lobe; 
two 3/8" (1 cm) fragments adhered to 
one edge. 
DECORATION: Painted. Royal arms 
with motto "HONI SOYT QVY MALY 
PENSI" and "BEATI PASSIFISI" and lion 
and unicorn supporters. Further 
inscribed "CR/1664 [1664]/NB." 
Published. Lothian, Armorial, p. 26, no. 16; 
Matthews, Pill Tiles, pp. 203-204, 208; 
Whittet, Phormaceuticol Journol, p. 171; 
Stretton, Rous Lench, p. 41, fig. 3; Lipski and 
Archer, Dated Delftware, no. 1677; Grigsby, 
Doted Longridge Delftware and Slipware, 
pp, 880-881, pl. 8. 
Ex coils.: D. Clare; T G. Burn, Rous Lench. 
he apothecary tile shown here is particularly unusual in that it bears the
English royal arms (see also nos. S9, S82, S83) rather than those of the
London 
Society of Apothecaries. The tile's date and "CR" initials (compare
nos. D15, 
D222) firmly place its manufacture during the reign of Charles 11 (1660-1685;
see Time Line, pp. 12-13). "NB" very likely refers to Nathaniel
Bateman, who in 
April 1653 was admitted as a freeman of the Society of Apothecaries. Bateman
had been a servant to Edward Cooke, Master of the Society from 1639 to 1641,
who had a shop and warehouse in Tower Street, London, and in 1653 provided
medicinal materials to the navy.' 
    The Longridge tile bears the second-earliest date known on a heart-shaped
delft example; the earliest dated one is more squat in proportions and more
sim- 
ply ornamented in blue and white with the date 1663 under a ribbon inscribed
"EDWARD WIEBB?]." A third dated heart tile, this one in polychrome,
bears the 
apothecaries' society arms and motto (see no. D394) and the inscription "1670/
THOMAS FAVTART."2 Heart-shaped apothecaries' arms tiles without dates
were 
made through the late eighteenth century; a few display the oval shield of
Lon- 
don (see no. D207). The arms seem usually to have been transferred by pouncing
through published illustrations (see also no. D411), and such pieces probably
typically were made for full members of the society. Most of the tiles are
in blue 
and white; manganese elements sometimes are indicative of a latter date.'
Heart- or shield-shaped and oval apothecaries' arms tiles are much less common
than rectangular ones with deeply chamfered corners (see no. D411).4 (For
a 
large, heart-shaped tile depicting figures in a landscape, see no. D423.)
    The 1699 Pickleherring factory inventory includes under "White and
Painted 
 Perfect Ware," or finished delftware, "5 Apothecary tyles"
at a price of ten 
 shillings., The entry presumably refers to tiles of this general type, many
of which 
 are pierced for hanging. The holes, usual lack of surface wear, and elaborate
armo- 
 rial ornament perhaps indicate that such tiles commonly were used as shop
signs. 
 Apothecary tile fragments were unearthed at Limekiln Lane in Bristol and
late 
 examples at Mortlake. Another fragment was excavated in Williamsburg, Vir-
 ginia, at the Nicolson Store/Pasteur & Galt Apothecary Shop site. No
Williamsburg 
 apothecary is known to have belonged to an English guild. 
1. Matthews, Pill Tiles, p. 208, where it is also 
remarked that the order to the society for mak- 
ing Bateman a freeman was from the Court of 
Aldermen of the City of London in response to 
correspondence from "his Excellency The Lord 
General Cromwell." 
2. Lipski and Archer, Dated Delftware, nos. 1676 
(dated 1663), 1678 (dated 1670); for an elongated 
apothecary tile dated 1651?l, see no. 1675. For 
"FAVTART" on the 1670 tile, as a London 
Huguenot name, see Matthews, Pill Tiles, p. 208. 
3. Archer, V&A, nos. K.13 (with London arms), 
K.14 (painted in blue with manganese outlines); 
Matthews, Pill Tiles, pls, 169c, 170b; Palmer and 
Chilton, Gardiner Museum, p. 29 (polychrome); 
Lothian, Armorial, pp. 23-24, nos. 9 (with Lon- 
don arms), 10 11; Crellin, Wellcome, nos. 277 
(with London arms), 278; Grigsby, Chipstone, 
no. 89; Lewis and Boorman, Winchester Phar- 
macy, p. 150. All of these tiles are in blue and 
white, unless noted. 
4. See Matthews, Pill Tiles, pl. 170c (oval); Lipski 
and Archer, Dated Delftware, nos. 1679 (oval, 
dated 1687), 1681 (shield, dated 1703); Archer, 
V&A, no. K.12 (shield); Lothian, Armorial, p. 23, 
nos. 7 8 (shield); Crellin, Wellcome, nos. 273 
276 (shield); Britton, London, nos. 126-127 
(shield). 
5. Britton, Pickleherring, p. 69. 
6. There is little evidence for apothecaries' soci- 
eties, in the formal meaning of the word, out- 
side London. For Liverpool, see Austin, Delft, 
no. 412; for a Bristol fragment, Archer, V&A, 
no. K.12. Fragments of apothecary tiles from 
around 1775-1800 were excavated at Mortlake 
(Stephenson comments (September 19981). 
7. Austin, Delft, p. 206. 


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