Wedgwood & Bentley



c. 1769–80

Black basalt with molded designs

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. John K. Olsen


This small and elaborately decorated ewer is perhaps the most important historic piece of Wedgwood in the Museum’s collection. It bears the name of “Bentley” beneath, as well as Wedgwood. A Liverpool merchant, Thomas Bentley was Josiah Wedgwood’s first partner. They celebrated the opening of Wedgwood’s new factory, Etruria, in 1768 by making six black basalt vases. These inspired other wares, such as this ewer.

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