The Portland Vase, England

The Portland Vase, England

The Portland Vase
'First edition' made at Josiah Wedgwood's factory; modelled by William Hackwood (1757?-1839) and Henry Webber (1754-1826)
England, Staffordshire
About 1790
Jasper with black 'dip' and white reliefs
Museum no. Circ.732-1956
J.A. Tulk Bequest

Jasperware was the greatest technical innovation of the influential Staffordshire potter, Josiah Wedgwood (1730-95). It is a fine-grained stoneware, developed by Wedgwood following thousands of experiments in the 1770s, which could be stained a range of colours as a background for applied white reliefs.

Wedgwood's copy of the Portland Vase reproduces a Roman cameo-cut glass vase, which was then one of the most celebrated Classical antiquities.