12/21/2010 0 Comments
The 'Maling' Wesley
This attribution is more controversial than my Dixon blog post because there are no known Wesley plaques with the Maling impressed mark.
Maling plaques made between 1817 and c1830 (like the one below left) usually have the semi-circular impressed 'MALING' mark. Unmarked circular plaques (c1830–c1840) are often attributed to Maling if they are decorated with green-flecked brushstrokes (right below). See my September 29 blog post for another tentative link between these unmarked plaques and Maling.
Until someone convinces me otherwise, I'll refer to the Wesley transfer that appears on these green-flecked plaques as the 'Maling' Wesley. So what are its attributes?
It appears on circular plaques bordered by moulded leaves in a variety of colour combinations. The 'Maling' Wesley transfer has a diagonally hatched background with a unique flaw. Imagine Wesley is holding a cigarette between his fingers, and a white smoke ring is drifting from its end, which you can faintly make out against the hatched background.
It also appears on plaques without leaf borders. Compare the two green-bordered plaques below. The one on the left is the 'Maling' transfer with the smoke ring. The one on the right isn't. (Click on the images to enlarge and to move backwards and forwards between them.) The two plaques beneath them with blue outer borders are also 'non-Maling', i.e. no smoke ring. Note that unlike the 'Maling' Wesley, there is no full stop on these plaques after the date '1739'. The 'non-Maling' plaques aren't pearlware. Their body is off-white and speckled. These plaques are also flatter and thinner than their 'Maling' counterparts.
Finally, below are two pink-bordered plaques with the 'Maling' Wesley transfer. I've seen several examples of the left plaque (Wesley and Clarke) and nearly all have faded lustre borders.
If anyone knows of a 'Maling' Wesley on a jug, bowl or plate, please contact me. It might help to prove (or disprove!) the attribution.
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Stephen Smith lives in London, and is always happy to hear from other collectors. If you have an interesting collection of plaques, and are based in the UK, he will photograph them for you. Free advice given regarding selling and dispersal of a collection, or to those wishing to start one. Just get in touch...
This website is indebted to collectors, dealers and enthusiasts who have shared their knowledge or photos. In particular: Ian Holmes, Stephen Duckworth, Dick Henrywood, Norman Lowe, Keith Lovell, Donald H Ryan, Harold Crowder, Jack and Joyce Cockerill, Myrna Schkolne, Elinor Penna, Ian Sharp, Shauna Gregg at the Sunderland Museum, Keith Bell, Martyn Edgell, and Liz Denton.