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Jug

ca. 1610
Origin: Germany, Westerwald
Overall: 12 x 5 x 5 1/2in. (30.5 x 12.7 x 14cm)
Stoneware, salt-glazed
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 2008-10
Baluster-shaped jug featuring a highly detailed narrative mid-band depicting the festivities commonly known as the "Peasant's wedding." A couple and their guests sit at a dining table flanked by people dancing, drinking, and playing musical instruments. The body of the vessel was thrown on the wheel and then the lavish embellishment was sprig-molded and applied separately to the piece. The ornamentation is further embellished with cobalt blue.
Label:One of the most popular secular stories on early Westerwald stoneware is also found in an archaeological site in Virginia. Twenty-four fragments of a jug approximately 10 to 11 inches tall with the design known as the “Peasants’ Wedding” were excavated from the Basse’s Choice site in Isle of Wight County, Virginia. This similar example at Colonial Williamsburg depicts a dining table with seated figures flanked by people dancing, drinking, and playing musical instruments. This pattern was also used on tankards and an inkstand. As with many early narratives schemes, the design was first produced on brown stoneware from Raeren.
Provenance:Purchased from Edwin van Drecht, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Inscription(s):' Wer sein kop wilt halten rein - Der las die Bauern ire Hochzeit allein' on a band around the middle of the vessel. English translation: Who wants to keep a sound mind - has to leave the peasants alone on their wedding.