Buletinul ”Ioan Neculce” al Muzeului de Istorie a Moldovei – XXII / 2016


Archaeological researches created during the period 1978-1982, in the area of the former Tribunal of Iaşi, ”Moldova” Hotel and Ştefan cel Mare Avenue, led to the discovery of four faience plates, which are at present part of the patrimony of Moldavia’s History Museum in Iaşi. These plates were meant for the common people, were made by four different English manufacturers, in the “transfer printing” technique. The printing of the first plate shows composition with birds, and on the verso the manufacturer’s stamp which contains the word “Zoological” and the monogram W&B. These elements indicate it was achieved in the Wood & Brownfield workshops in Cobridge, during the period 1841-1850. The second item is a small plate ornamented with personages within an oriental frame. The manufacturer’s stamp contains the word “Kulat” and the monogram P B &H, thus pointing to the Pinder, Bourne & Hope company in Burslem, which created such items during the period 1851-1862.

If for the first two vessels, one knows exactly the names of the manufacturers having produced them, for the other items this is hard to achieve, as either no manufacturer’s signs have been preserved, considering the fragmentation of the vessels, or they were not marked with the manufacture’s stamp. Thus, the third item, produced after 1837, is ornamented with images of Eastern inspiration, based on a detail of the manufacturer’s make: the coat of arms of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and of Irland during the reign of Queen Victoria, with the motto “Dieu et mon droit” (God and My Right), under which the name “London Patent” is inscribed. The fourth item, which cannot be dated earlier than 1833 nor later than 1845, is bordered with an “Acanthus Scroll”, used on those times in ornamenting the plates with images inspired from the life of poet Byron. The central scene represents a religious edifice, which could be, most probably, the Church of St. Mary Magdalene in Hucknall, the place where the poet is buried. The presence of the plates point out the tendency of the high class of the city of Iaşi at mid-19th century, for the purchase of luxury items made in the British Isles.