bearing dates and names or initials of mould-cutters, among them Ian Emens and Baldem Mennicken; but it must not always be inferred that a piece is as old as the date introduced in its decoration, for the same set of moulds might be used for many years.
Another important centre in the 16th century was at Frechen near Cologne. Round-bellied jugs known as Bartmänner, from the bearded mask applied in front of the neck, covered with a brown glaze, which in later examples is often coagulated into thick spots, were first made here towards the end of the 15th century, and continued to be the staple product well into the 17th. The jugs of this type, known as Greybeards or Bellarmines, which were exported in profusion to England, Scandinavia and the Low Countries, were mostly made here. At Cologne itself there were also factories, probably before the 16th century, the later productions of which resemble those of Frechen.
During the 17th and 18th centuries the busiest stoneware centre was the district surrounding Höhr-Grenzhausen in Nassau known as the Kannebäckerländchen, where artistic ware was being made before 1600. Soon after that date manganese purple was first used in the decoration in addition to cobalt blue, and henceforward colour in combination with impressed and incised ornament tended more and more to supersede decoration in relief. Figure subjects gave place to rosettes, foliage on wavy stems, and geometrical patterns. Vessels of large size and fantastic shape appear beside the standard forms of the earlier factories. In the 18th century the forms of beer-vessels became stereotyped in the globular jug with cylindrical neck and the cylindrical tankard, while tea and coffee pots, inkstands and other vessels, hitherto unknown, began to be made. A stoneware manufacture dating back to the middle ages existed at Creussen in Bavaria. The productions of this district during the 17th and 18th centuries consist of tankards of squat shape, jugs and jars, of a dark red body, covered with a lustrous dark brown glaze, frequently painted after the first firing in brilliant enamel colours with figures of the Apostles, the electors of the Empire, or other oft-repeated motives. Imitations of the wares of Raeren and Grenzhausen were made at Bouffioulx near Charleroi; other minor centres of the manufacture were at Meckenheim near Cologne and Bunzlau in Silesia.
As in England, so in Holland (by Ary de Milde and certain Delft potters) and in Germany, attempts were made with some success, early in the 18th century, to imitate the Chinese red stoneware, known as boccaros. The early efforts of Böttger, the discoverer of the secret of true porcelain, at Meissen, belong to this category. His red ware is of such hardness that it was cut and polished on the lapidary’s wheel. For some time after the manufacture of red ware at Meissen had ceased, a glazed brown ware of less hard body with gilt or silver decoration was made at Bayreuth. The products of other minor factories of this class cannot now be identified.
Mention may be made of the lead-glazed peasant pottery, such as the bowls produced at Marburg with quaint symbolical devices modelled in relief and applied. Slip-covered wares with graffiato decoration, apparently of indigenous growth and not inspired by foreign examples, were made well on into the 19th century near Crefeld and elsewhere in Germany, at Langnau in Switzerland, and by German emigrants in Pennsylvania. In Holland a peculiar green-glazed ware was made in the 18th century with pierced geometrical decoration recalling the Dutch carved woodwork of the period.
Delft.—One of the most remarkable phenomena in the history of pottery is the appearance about 1600, in a highly developed state, of the manufacture of a tin-enamelled earthenware at Delft. It was introduced in that town by Herman Pietersz of Haarlem, but whence he learned his art is unknown. The faience-makers (plateelbackers) were one of the eight crafts of Delft which formed the Gild of St Luke founded in 1611. About 1650 a great development took place, and till the latter years of the 18th century, when its faience was ousted by the more serviceable wares of the English potteries, Delft remained the most important centre of ceramic industry in northern Europe. The ware is of fine buff-coloured clay, dipped after the first firing in a white tin-enamel, which formed the ground for painted decoration; after painting, this was covered with a transparent lead glaze and fired a second time, so that in its technique it belongs to the same class as the painted Italian majolica and the old French faience. At its best it is rightly ranked among the greatest achievements of the potter’s art.
Characteristic of the first period are dishes and plaques in blue monochrome with somewhat overcrowded scenes of popular life in the style of the engravings of Goltzius. Imitations of the oriental porcelain imported by the Dutch East India Company were introduced about 1650 by Aelbregt de Keizer and continued for some time among the finest productions. At the same time the earlier tradition was developed in the finely painted landscapes and portraits of Abraham de Kooge and Frederick van Frytom. Other potters of the best period were Lambartus van Eenhorn and Louwys Fictoor, makers of the large reeded vases with Chinese floral designs in polychrome, Augestyn Reygens, Adriaen Pynacker, and Lucas van Dale; to the last are attributed the pieces with yellow decoration on an olive-green enamel ground. The rare examples with polychrome decoration on a black ground in imitation of Chinese lacquer are the work of Fictoor and Pynacker. With the 18th century came a largely increased demand and a consequent deterioration in artistic quality. The rise of the German porcelain factories had its effect in the introduction of overglaze painting fired in a muffle kiln, typified by the work of the Dextras, father and son. This innovation, by which the Delft potters attempted to compete with European porcelain, contributed to the ruin of their art by eliminating the skilled touch required for painting on the unfired enamel. The ware frequently, but not invariably, bears a mark derived from the sign of the factory (the rose, the peacock, the three bells, &c.), or the name or initials of its proprietor.
A small faience factory was started by Jan van Kerkhoff about 1755 at Arnhem; its productions were of good quality, chiefly in the rococo style, marked with a cock.
The exportation of the Delft ware to Germany occasioned the rise of numerous factories in that country for making faience in imitation of the Dutch. Among these may be named Hanau (founded about 1670), Frankfort and Cassel. Others, such as Kiel and Stralsund, drew their inspiration from the productions of Marseilles and Strassburg (q.v.). At Nuremberg a factory was founded in 1712, which was but little affected by extraneous influences; among its characteristic productions are dishes with sunk decoration in the form of a star, and jugs with long necks and pear-shaped bodies, often spirally fluted. Similar wares were made at Bayreuth. The Dutch and French styles were carried by German potters into Scandinavia; factories were established at Copenhagen in 1722, at Rörstrand and Marieberg near Stockholm in 1728 and 1758, and at Herrebøe in Norway about 1759.
At the close of the 18th century the influence of imported English earthenware was strongly felt. In Holland workshops were established for painting the English cream-coloured ware with subjects suited to the Dutch taste; and in Germany cream-coloured wares and steingut in imitation of Wedgwood’s productions were manufactured at Cassel, Proskau and elsewhere. The “Delft” ware of Holland during the 17th century was a beautiful decorative ware, in which the Dutch painters caught successfully the spirit, and often the very colour value, of Chinese blue and white porcelain. Its fame spread over the whole of Europe, and its styles were readily imitated by the potters of all other countries who made a similar ware. Even the polychrome Delft, though not nearly so beautiful as the “blue and white,” is strongly decorative, and one sees in the polychrome faience of northern France and of Germany more than a trace of its influence. When this ware was supplanted by English earthenware it was a clear instance of a ware that was technically superior displacing a more artistic product.