Illustrated Ceramic Cup Base

This cup was recovered from the excavations along the boundary of New Place and the adjacent Nash’s House. It is a hand-painted transfer print and bears the motto; ‘When the well is they know the worth of water’. This quote, believed to have derived from Benjamin Franklin, shows the pious virtues prevalent within society at the time and was aimed at the American market.   

More images available in the gallery above.

The rest of the inscription should read ‘The Way to Wealth or Dr Franklin’s Poor Richard Illustrated, Being Lessons For Youth on Industry, Temperance and Frugality’. Benjamin Franklins original maxims appeared in Poor Richard’s Almanac between the years 1732 – 1757 and Staffordshire ceramics factories began producing smaller china for children around 1790 (coincidentally the same year Franklin died). These proverbs were printed on plates and cups and were intended to provide life lessons to in a quaint manner.

  • Object Type: 18th Century Utilitarian Artefact
  • Origin Year: 18th Century
  • Dimensions: 75mm x 70mm x 3mm
  • Materials: Ceramic