Near the end of the 1800’s, pewterware, like other wares such as pottery, changed from strictly utilitarian to also being decorative. In 1875 Arthur Lasenby Liberty founded the Liberty of London store, with the aim of selling well-designed, quality items. In 1901, Liberty bought a majority share in the metalworking firm of W.H. Haseler in Birmingham. Haseler’s started producing beautiful pewter for Liberty the following year and continued until the 1930’s. The line was called Tudric and used Arts and Crafts, Art Nouveau and Celtic Revival designs. The name Tudric may be a possible reference to Tewdrig, a 6th century Welsh saint, since the so-called Celtic motifs are actually of Welsh origin.
All four pieces of the tea set have finely hand hammered surfaces. They have the full maker’s punchmark on each bottom which is clear and visible. All four marks are identical, which indicates a matched set, and they read vertically:
6 “TUDRIC” ENGLISH PEWTER LIBERTY & CO 01075
The set consists of a teapot, which is marked 1 ½ pints on the bottom and has a domed hinged lid with an ebonized wood knob; the graceful handle is also ebonized wood. There is also a coffee pot, marked 1 pint on the bottom, with the same handle and knob. The other two pieces are a cream jug and a double handled open sugar bowl. The teapot measures 5 inches tall and 9 inches from handle to spout. The coffee pot stands a bit over 6 inches tall and measures 5 ½ inches spout to handle. The creamer and sugar are both 2 1/2 inches tall and about 5 inches across.
The set is in wonderful condition, with a small dent on the sugar bowl and one on the coffeepot, which of course can be turned away for display. At some point in its long life, the teapot has gotten a bit lower on the spout side, but it’s not readily apparent. The pieces are lightly polished, as the hand hammered Tudric pewter was intended to be.
This tea set is a wonderful find for the collector of pewter and/or Arts and Crafts era decorative items.