Very Rare Wedgwood 8" Fox Print & Majolica Tile


  • Style/technique: Pictorial transfer print with majolica glazes
  • Manufacturer: Josiah Wedgwood & Sons
  • Pattern number: M1602A
  • Dimensions: 8" x 8"
  • Date: circa 1885


A superb and rare illustration of a fox peering out from behind an oak tree, one of a limited series known as Fresco Heads produced by Wedgwood. Brilliantly glazed in highly translucent and richly coloured glazes. This series is rare in six inch plain prints, in eight inch majolica glazed prints it is exceptionally rare.

Very possibly from a design by Henry Hope Crealock who was a noted military man and war artist and reached the rank of Lt General. He is also noted for his drawing of hunting scenes and in his 'off-peak' times on military deployments he illustrated wild animals in their natural habitat. It is unlikely that he designed these specifically for Wedgwood, the ceramic trades around Stoke on Trent were in the habit of copying illustrations from books and other sources.

Usually found on six inch tiles this is rare as an eight inch. Rarer still are the translucent glazes overpainting a transfer print, a technique that only Wedgwood and Marsden used to any extent. Probably the influence of George Marsden as he was then employed at Wedgwood pressing the company to keep up to date with technical and material advances in tile manufacture. Often suggested to be 1870s I am not convinced that these glazes were then technically possible, mid 1880s seems more likely although the patterns in single colour print may have been introduced earlier. The translucent pink inglaze colour for the fox's tongue and eye was especially difficult and generally not found inglaze until around 1890 and even then infrequently.

Verso a little grubby and slightly stained, clear embossed Wedgwood etc, pattern number written in stain.

Condition: Fairly good

Price: £260 (approx $333)

Ref: 02803

Quite a few chips around the edges, perhaps a couple of dozen in all though none at all large. One deep scratch near the fox's right ear whch breaks through the glaze and general light scratches and light wear where the glaze is a fraction higher, mostly the dark outline so it doesn't show too much. Most marks not visible when viewed reasonably directly from normal viewng distance (2 - 3 feet), the tile displays excellent as seen in the image.


UK Special Delivery £270

US and World Airsure £280

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