A Minton pâte-sur-pâte flask. See additional photo slideshow assembled by Christopher Proudlove.
have been interested in English China ever since I started collecting Doulton. In the 1800s, there were many wonderful companies producing china in England, but many of their works have been forgotten, because most people consider them old fashion. Minton is one of these. But, true collectors of Minton China are just waiting for special pieces to show their heads, and these Minton China pieces from the 1800s will bring top dollar. It is nothing for a jardiniere, plate or vase to bring $4,000 or many times more. Some Minton has the look of majolica, which refers to enamelled stoneware with high-relief decoration, and often these pieces can be rather large and bring top dollar.
Today, the difference between the dollar and the pound makes it a great time for British collectors to be watching our markets very closely for those sought after pieces to buy here in this country and ship back to England. To the English, everything in America is selling for half price, and they assuredly want to take advantage of this buying opportunity. In several years past, the currency situation was the reverse, and many a great Minton pieces found their way into this country, while many more pieces remain stashed away in the estates of their original owners.
The early Minton pieces had many marks, and they can all be found in Kovels New Dictionary of Marks. I have recommended that everyone reading this Blog and working the 31 Club Plan own a copy of this book. It doesn’t have to be a new one. In fact, I buy many of my reference books used. Amazon
has many used copies of this excellent resource available for under $7. I don’t see how it’s possible for a person in this business to do well without a good mark book. It is impossible to keep the different marks of all the companies you will run across in your head.
While Minton has many pieces collectors dream of owning, they have also produced a lot of common china. This isn't what we are looking for. The pieces we want are brightly colored and have flowers, Sea Creatures, Cherubs, Greek Goddesses, Fruit, Children and other stunning features. Do be aware that there are reproductions in the market, and if you have any doubt, be sure to have a return policy with the seller should it prove to be a reproduction. The great thing about Minton is that they made it very easy to date most of their pieces, and all Minton will have their name on it. Listings of each date with its symbol can be found in the back of the Kovels book.
Although the kind of Minton we are looking for was produced in the mid 1800s, Minton actually began production around 1793. It is still being made today by Doulton, who acquired them in 1968 and still uses the Minton name.
If you go to eBay you will not find many of the older pieces, because as I stated earlier, most people consider Minton old fashioned. But a little further research will show what the true pieces sell for, you’ll say, “Whoa!” Many of these great pieces can be seen in sales catalogs from Christie’s and Sotheby’s.
Remember, in this country, the Minton name may not carry much weight, but in England and other European countries, the Minton name is still King of the Hill.
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