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Hand Warmer in the shape of a Book: C.1429-1928

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Object information


Hand Warmer in the shape of a Book


Probably unidentified London pottery (Pottery)


Tin-glazed earthenware painted in blue, turquoise-green, yellow and dark ochre

Buff earthenware, tin-glazed, and painted in blue, turquoise-green, yellow and dark ochre. Formed in the shape of a book, originally with two false clasps. It has two internal compartments linked by a hole, and has an approximately rectangular aperture in the top next to the spine, and a small hole in the back top left corner. Both sides are decorated in blue with the date 1663 within a lozenge-shaped frame, and with a fleur-de-lys in each corner. The spine is decorated with four horizontal blue stripes alternating with double wavy lines which have run, and the fore-edge is turquoise-green with blue lines to represent the pages. The stumps of the clasps are yellow.


History note: Mr Hawkins, Grantham in 1891; Sir John Evans collection; sold Christie, Manson & Woods, 14 February 1911, Interesting collection of Lambeth pottery, Rhodian, Hispano-Mauro, and other faience . . ., lot 54; bought by the dealer, Mr Harding (probably Wilfred) for 15 guineas, who sold it on the same day for 17 guineas to Dr J.W.L. Glaisher, FRS, Trinity College, Cambridge

Legal notes

Dr J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Depth: 3.5 cm
Height: 12.2 cm
Width: 8.6 cm

Relative size of this object

8.6 cm12.2 cm3.5 cm What does this represent?

Relative size of this object is displayed using code inspired by Good Form and Spectacle's work on the British Museum's Waddeson Bequest website and their dimension drawer. They chose a tennis ball to represent a universally sized object, from which you could envisage the size of an object.

Place(s) associated

  • London ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bequeathed (1928-12-07) by Glaisher, J. W. L., Dr


Third quarter of 17th century
Charles II
Production date: dated AD/CE 1663


Probably made in a London pottery, although the Brislington Pottery was also operating at this date.

Components of the work

Decoration: composed of high-temperature colours ( blue, turquoise-green, yellow, and a very little dark ochre)

Materials used in production

buff Earthenware Tin-glaze

Techniques used in production

Tin-glazing : Buff earthenware, tin-glazed, and painted in blue, turquoise-green, yellow, and a very little dark ochre high-temperature (metallic oxide) colours

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: 1663
  • Location: On both sides
  • Method of creation: Painted in blue
  • Date

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1429-1928
Primary reference Number: 71987
Old object number: 3332
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Friday 17 July 2020 Last processed: Sunday 28 November 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) "Hand warmer" Web page available at: Accessed: 2021-12-03 21:45:38

Citation for Wikipedia

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{{cite web|url=|title=Hand warmer|author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2021-12-03 21:45:38|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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<div class="text-center my-3"> <figure class="figure"> <img src="" alt="Hand Warmer in the shape of a Book" class="img-fluid" /> <figcaption class="figure-caption text-info">Hand Warmer in the shape of a Book</figcaption> </figure> </div>

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