Learn about Majolica

Majolica is a trade name first used in England by the Minton Pottery, and later by others including Wedgwood, Copeland, George Jones, and in Australia by John Campbell and Bendigo Pottery. A large quantity of majolica was also produced in England and Europe that is unmarked, or was made by minor manufacturers. Majolica is an earthenware pottery decorated with a clear lead glaze and is characterised by vivid colour and a high gloss finish. It was first introduced in England by Minton at the Great Exhibition in London in 1851 as "Palissy ware", named after the inventor, the 16th century French potter Bernard Palissy, (c 1510 - c 1589) and also another type of earthenware coloured by an opaque glaze, which it called "Majolica Ware", the name derived from the Italian maiolica ware. However over time the name "Palissy Ware" was dropped and the wares became known as "Majolica". To add to the confusion, the English pottery A.E. Jones and Sons, of Stoke-on-Trent, used the name "Palissy" for its majolica wares.

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A pair of majolica kookaburra tiles, circa 1910, (later frames), tiles: 15 x 15 cm, Provenance: Collection of The Late Geoffrey Maxwell Worthington

Antique French majolica jardiniere and stand, approx 123 cm high

George Jones Majolica Squirrel Strawberry server modelled with a squirrel eating a nut, sitting on a tree trunk, unmarked. Diamond date mark for 29th, May, 1872. Condition, good, minor wear to the base, width, 25 cm

A pair of Hugo Lonitz Majolica ceramic figures, Germany, c. 1865, modeled of a Regal ship commander and his wife who is holding a shawl on one arm, a stringed purse in her other hand. Both with impressed mark (a/f ships to the man's hat and base) heigh

Vintage Swiss majolica bowl with frog & a larger shallow bowl, 26 cm diameter approx., by Thoune Pottery,

Six French majolica oyster plates 'Proceram', 24 cm diameter approx.

A Majolica Trivet. Late 19th to 20th century. In typical green, yellow and blue colours with a quatrefoil design enclosing vine leaves and fruits, with leafy spandrels upon a textured blue ground, a bamboo moulded frame and compressed feet; marked undersid

Antique majolica barbers bottle probably by Adams and Bromley, approx. 25 cm high

Antique green majolica 'Dairy' tile, trade sign, featuring a dairy cow and milkmaid, approx. 31 cm x 46 cm

Vintage Swiss majolica tea & coffee set by Thoune Pottery, comprising teapot & stand, creamer & sugar bowl & 8 various cups & saucers plus 1 spare cup

Four Italian Majolica bowls and a serving platter (36 cm diameter approx.), some minor glazing losses

A Sarraguemines majolica asparagus dish, French, circa 1950

A highly decorative armorial design majolica stick and umbrella stand Italian, 19th century 71 cm high, 25 cm diameter

Antique French majolica vase, approx 24 cm high, 31 cm wide

A pair of Art Deco glazed pottery lion figures, circa 1920s-30s, the walking lions on integral plinth bases, one in a rich green majolica glaze, the other in pale pink, slip cast and glazed also the interior; unmarked. Height 25 cm. Length 44 cm. Width 13.

English Majolica 'Gurgling' fish jugs having raised fishscale detail, on round pedestal bases. Condition good to fair, early chip to one mouth. Height 26.5 cm

English antique Majolica 'Honey Bear' jug attributed to George Skey modelled as a bear sitting cross legged, with two interlocking spoons to form the handle, unmarked. Condition poor, some restoration, cracks & losses. Height 30 cm

A 19th century Majolica Palissy Ware wall plate, depicting frogs insects and leaves.

A pair of antique Italian majolica hand painted jars. 50 cm

Large antique majolica twin handled vase, cast in relief with birds in branches and heads of wheat, 32 cm high, 41 cm wide (small losses to one birds wing, and small glaze loss to wheat head)

Antique majolica jardiniere decorated with flowers & multi tone blue body, approx 20 cm high

Antique French Majolica jardiniere, approx 20 cm high, 22 cm diameter

Antique 19th century Italian Majolica oviform vase with snake handles and painted yellow, blue and green classical figure decoration, on splayed foot, approx 60 cm high

Antique Majolica jardiniere decorated with bunches of grapes and black lizards in relief, approx 20 cm high, 20 cm diameter

Antique Majolica 'Orchies' jardiniere, approx 14 cm high, 25 cm long

Majolica style jardiniere, approx 17 cm high, 39 cm wide, 30 cm deep

Antique French Majolica jardiniere, approx 22 cm high

Cantagalli Majolica Madonna & child plaque after the Renaissance original 'Madonna in the lily Bower' of Luca Della Robbia resembling closest the example in the Lichtenstein collection, set in an oak wall hung frame. Condition, good, minor paint chip to ch

Wardle & Company Majolica 'Bird & fan' teapot decorated to each side with a bird within a fan panel, unmarked.

Thomas Sargent French Majolica 'Bull' wall pockets with laurel head wreaths & ribbons, incised 'Ts' to verso.

Portuguese antique Palissy style Majolica reptile platter of heavy proportions modelled with various reptile, amphibians & bugs, stamped to the base. Diameter 39 cm

Portuguese antique Majolica Palissy style Reptile plate diameter 23 cm

Portuguese antique Majolica Palissy style Reptile plate diameter 32 cm

Portuguese antique Majolica Palissy style lidded ewer the body & cover in the typical rustique manner with three applied scarab beetles, the handle modelled as a lizard hunting the frog finial whilst another smaller lizard looks on.

Portuguese antique Majolica Palissy style ewer & under plate the body & cover in the typical rustique manner with two applied scarab beetles, the handle modelled as a lizard hunting the frog whilst three smaller lizards stalk a butterfly. Condition, fair,

Portuguese antique Majolica pair of Palissy style monkey candlesticks having two applied monkey figures seated in tree form candlesticks on round yellow pedestal bases. Unmarked but probably by Mafra. Condition, good to fair, minor chips & repairs. Height