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Figure of Nobody: C.1433-1928

An image of Anthropomorphic vessel

Photograph copyright © The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.

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An image of Anthropomorphic vessel
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Object information


Figure of Nobody


Possibly Brislington Pottery (Pottery)
uncertain (Pottery)


Tin-glazed and painted earthenware vessel in the form of a man smoking a pipe, initialled and dated 'M/RM/1675'

Buff earthenware, moulded, pierced, tin-glazed, and painted in blue, pale turquoise-green, yellow, and orange. Nobody stands with his feet together, his left hand resting on his hip, and his right hand outstretched and holding a pipe which he is puffing. The pipe was made separately and attached. The roughly circular mound base has a pierced border of single holes alternating with pairs of smaller holes, some of which are filled with glaze. The underside is initialled and dated 'M/RM/1675'


History note: Cyril Andrade, London from whom purchased on 13 October 1926 for £21 by Dr Glaisher.

Legal notes

Dr. J.W.L. Glaisher Bequest

Measurements and weight

Height: 23.3 cm

Place(s) associated

  • London ⪼ England

Acquisition and important dates

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


Late 17th Century
Charles II
Production date: dated CE 1675 : dated


Nobody is a non-existent person who is blamed for mishaps and minor misdemeanours. This figure resembles an illustration of Nobody on the title page of Nobody and Somebody, a play published in London in 1606.

This figure was earlier attributed to London, probably Southwark, but Brislington Pottery has been suggested as an alternative.

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Decoration: composed of high-temperature colours ( blue, pale turquoise-green, yellow, and orange) Base: Diameter 10.6 cm

Materials used in production

buff Earthenware Tin-glaze

Techniques used in production

Moulding : Buff earthenware, moulded in parts, tin-glazed, and painted in blue, pale turquoise-green, yellow, and orange.

Inscription or legends present

  • Text: M/RM/1675
  • Location: On underside of base
  • Method of creation: Painted in blue
  • Inscription

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: C.1433-1928
Primary reference Number: 71996
Old object number: 4440
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Tuesday 16 March 2021 Last processed: Thursday 8 April 2021

Associated departments & institutions

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

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

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2020) "Anthropomorphic vessel" Web page available at: Accessed: 2021-07-31 05:31:38

To cite this record on Wikipedia you can use this code snippet:

{{cite web|url=|title=Anthropomorphic vessel|author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2021-07-31 05:31:38|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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