Sunday, September 7, 2014

North Devon sherds - local finds part 1

I have been collecting sherds and fragments from the local beach over the last three years, at low Spring tides, preferably when the River Torridge is lower (after less rainfall) and mainly in the Winter. It's not so weedy and sandy then compared to the Summer, which makes it easier to spot the pot!

I will share some of my finds over the next few blog posts which gives me an opportunity to take stock of what's in my collection and to raise the significance or otherwise of the finds. It is also an opportunity to open up these for comment, analysis, appreciation and highlight the relevance and significance of North Devon's Pottery heritage and industry here in Bideford. 

This piece is one of my favourites because it really is a fragment, not a sherd, as explained by Rob Hunter Editor of Ceramics in America, because you can see this piece for what it is - or was - rather than a smaller unidentifiable piece of pot. 
A Pipkin is a cooking pot, glazed on the inside as this would have been in contact with food. A complete vessel would have had three feet, intended for standing on fire or hearth and a stubby handle on one side. The form goes back to Medieval times and the 17th Century English colonists and planters would have used these cooking vessels in their settlements.

I love this one as its now got sea barnacles encrusted on it from its hundreds of years in the salt water.