Pink Lustre Antique Porcelain Souvenir Plate, John Bunyan Statue England
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This beautiful pink lustre souvenir plate pictures the John Bunyan statue on St. Peter's Green in Bedford, England, unveiled in 1874. John Bunyan is best remembered as the author of "The Pilgrim's Progress"; he came from a town very near to Bedford. He is shown holding a Bible and there are three scenes from "The Pilgrim's Progress" on the stone plinth beneath him (photograph #4 shows the actual statue). The printed red mark on the reverse reads "Bavarian Manufacture." It’s interesting to note that, even though this is an English souvenir and as dominant as English potteries were in the late 1800’s, this plate was made in Germany.
Scenic porcelain like this plate was extremely popular with both locals and tourists; it's small, decorative and easily carried. Companies that ordered souvenir items from factories that were frequently German, sent them photographs, drawings or postcards of local scenes of interest. These were turned into steel or copper engravings which were used to make transfer decals. The decals were applied by burnishing (rubbing) them on the porcelain prior to firing. Often the decals were then hand tinted, as this one has been.
This plate measures 8 1/4 inches across and stands 1 1/4 inches high. The colors of the scene are fresh and there is virtually no discernible wear; the gilt encircling it is very fresh-looking, also. There is wear on the gilded plate rim and the lustre on the raised areas on the face of the plate, but it is in otherwise excellent condition and a great addition to a souvenir or pink lustre collection.