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Platter with View of Freemason's Tavern and Masonic Symbols
ca. 1835
James Cuff; Staffordshire Potteries
England: Staffordshire
Transfer-printed earthenware
overall: 1-1/2"h x 17"w x 13-3/4"d
Special Acquisitions Fund

Blue underglazed transfer-printed platter with a border of petals and flowers. A second border is a wide band of rosettes alternating with Masonic symbols including stars with G in the center; square and compasses; level and plumb; Past Master's jewel; and trowel, sword and gauge. A building, Freemason's Tavern in London, is in the center with people and horses in the street in front. A border around the central scene has repeating lyre shapes. On the back is a transfer-printed mark reading, "John Burn, Newport Market, London, J.J. Cuff."

The transfer-print was copied from an engraved 1789 view of Freemason's Tavern titled "Freemason's Tavern, Great Queen Street, Lincolns Inn Fields," published in London in 1811. Newport Market was situated on the north side of Leicester Square and was named after the nearby townhouse of the Earl of Newport. Newport Market was composed mainly of small shops which included Messrs. Cuff & Son, who were tenants of Freemason's Tavern from 1831-1839.