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Tile panel with blue peacocks: C.1-1976

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Object information


Tile panel with blue peacocks


William De Morgan & Co. (Maker)
De Morgan, William Frend (Designer)


Panel of eight large central tiles surrounded by a border of twelve rectangular tiles and four corner tiles. Earthenware, slip-coated, trace-transfered in 'Persian' colours, and clear-glazed. The central panel, painted in blue, turquoise-blue, green, yellow,pale orange, and brown on a white ground, shows two facing peacocks amid foliage, bordered above and below by fish swimming in a deep blue sea. The borders consist of Islamic, Persian style arches with fleur-de-lis and swirls, in light blue, dark blue and manganese red.


History note: Purchased from Michael Whiteway, London W8

Legal notes

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum

Measurements and weight

Length: 87.3 cm
Width: 51 cm

Place(s) associated

  • Fulham ⪼ London ⪼ England
  • London ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1976-01-29) by The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum


Late 19th Century
Circa 1888 CE - 1898 1898 CE


De Morgan produced tiles and lustre-ware in Chelsea from 1872, and at Merton Abbey (next door to Morris’s factory) from 1882-8. From 1888-98 he set up at Sands End, Fulham, in partnership with the architect Halsey Ricardo (1854-1928), continuing from 1898-1907 with his kiln-master Frank Iles and decorators Charles and Fred Passenger as his partners. De Morgan made many, many designs for tiles and tile panels – some 820 are in the V&A collection. There exists a near-identical, though differently coloured, peacock panel, made at Sands End (see Greenwood). The same fish design and a different peacock scene were used, c.1904-1907, for the winter garden at 8 Addison Road, West London, a house designed by Halsey Ricardo for the retailer Sir Ernest Debenham.

William Frend De Morgan (1839-1917), now widely regarded as the most important ceramicist of the Arts & Crafts movement, also worked in stained glass and became a successful novelist. The son of a non-conformist mathematics professor, he became a close friend of William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones and married the Pre-Raphaelite painter Evelyn Pickering (1855-1919), in 1887. As a ceramicist, De Morgan was primarily a designer/decorator and chemist, working on bought-in blanks or pots thrown to his design. He experimented widely with techniques and glazes, re-discovering methods for making and applying lustres and the colours of Iznik and Persian pottery and using them for a range of complex fantasy designs featuring ships, birds, flora and animals.

School or Style

Arts and Crafts (movement)

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Front: composed of glaze ( clear) Decoration:

Materials used in production


Techniques used in production

Slip-coating : Earthenware, slip-coated, decorated with a traced-transfer design and clear-glazed

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1-1976
Primary reference Number: 15381
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Thursday 8 April 2021

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2020) "Tile panel" Web page available at: Accessed: 2022-01-29 07:17:36

Citation for Wikipedia

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{{cite web|url=|title=Tile panel|author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2022-01-29 07:17:36|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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<div class="text-center my-3"> <figure class="figure"> <img src="" alt="Tile panel with blue peacocks" class="img-fluid" /> <figcaption class="figure-caption text-info">Tile panel with blue peacocks</figcaption> </figure> </div>

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