Polito’s Menagerie, England

Polito’s Menagerie, England

Polito's Menagerie
England, Staffordshire
About 1830
Lead-glazed earthenware, painted in enamels
Museum no. C.128-2003
Purchased through the Julie and Robert Breckman Staffordshire Fund

This mantelpiece ornament shows the entrance to a famous travelling menagerie. Although made of inexpensive earthenware, the elaborate moulded and painted decoration would have made it more costly than other pieces. It marks a high point in quality before Staffordshire potters began making cheaper, simpler moulded figures.