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John Shorthose

Mochaware coffeepot

Possibly John Shorthose English, 1768-1828
Mochaware coffeepot, ca. 1820
Earthenware with slip decoration
26.4 x 22.2 x 14 cm (10 3/8 x 8 13/16 x 5 1/2 inches) handle to spout; diameter
Gift of Miss Alice Brownell, Mrs. Ernst R. Behrend and Alfred S. Brownell 29.188

  • This coffeepot is from a group of ceramics often called mochaware, generally utilitarian forms decorated with fanciful colored slips (liquefied clay) in a variety of patterns. Wildly popular in the United States in the early 1800s, mochaware was imported from England as early as 1781, when the Providence Gazette announced an auction of recently arrived “marbled crockery.” On this coffeepot, the circles of cream-, tan-, and black-colored slip have been allowed to drip down its sides, a daring design that draws immediate attention to the technique.

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