A charming pair of antique English pearlware Obadiah Sherratt style enamelled bocage figurines of a boy with a dog and a girl with a lamb (possibly another dog?) however, they are categorised as a shepherds and shepherdess by Myrna Schkolne on her excellent website earlystaffordshirefigures.com.
The figures are both probably based upon the earlier ( circa 1770) Derby Biscuit porcelain figures that are incised N 57 and sometimes titled French Shepherds.
Each of these sweet pearlware figures is standing barefoot on a short stepped rococo plinth that looks generally shield shape from the underside. There is a red white and blue band to the base, possibly a patriotic theme or a nod to the Tricolour with reference to the French Shepherds name. Both the boy and girl are leaning against a short tree stump with rudimentary bocage protruding both left and right. The main bodies are slip cast with additional modelled features such as their arms, the lamb, dog and bocage.
He is wearing knee length shorts and a floral waistcoat with a long light blue jacket and is holding and playing with a small black and white terrier dog, it may possibly be a puppy. She is wearing long floral dress with a mottled pink lustre underskirt and is holding what we think is probably a small lamb.
This lovely antique pair of "Sherratt" figures date from around 1820 at the end of the Regency period and during the reign of King George IV. They are unmarked as is often the case with such items.
Obadiah Sherratt (1775 -1846) was a potter who has had a number of figures attributed to his factory. In 1797, he was married to Ann Davenport at the church of Norton-in-the-moors. Ann died in 1810, and in the death registry, he was reported to be a potter in Burslem, England. He was later remarried to a 26 year-old widow named Martha Austin. He is recorded as working at Hot lane Burslem from 1810 until 1828 when he moved to Waterloo Road. The trade directories of 1822-1823 record him as a "Master Potter Toy and Figurine Maker" in Hot Lane, Burslem. In 1834, records show that he was still a potter, and the likely keeper of an Ale house in Burslem. Obadiah's son Hamlet (1814-1863) took over the pottery sometime after 1834. Hamlet turned it over to Martha, sometime between 1846 and 1851 after Obadiah's death. By 1860, Martha is reported to have given up the business.
Item condition: Both in good antique condition. Some minor restorations or repairs. She has had her head broken off and re-stuck, the lamb front right leg has been broken and reglued. His right hand is a restoration and the tip of the bocage on his left has been broken off whilst the clay was in the leather state before firing, as it has been glazed over. There is a stabilised crack to the back of his base. There are some minor enamel colour touch-ins on both figures. Please see the images.
This is a great antique pair to add to any collection of early Staffordshire Figures, Shepherd and Shepherdesses, enamelled pearlware figurines Georgian or early 19th century pottery.
Shepherd height 4 3/8 inches ( 11 cm)
Shepherd depth 1 3/4 inches ( 4.5 cm)
Shepherd width 2 1/2 inches ( 8.5 cm)
Total weight 155 grammes unpacked.
"Sherratt? A Natural Family of Staffordshire Figures" by Malcolm and Judith Hodkinson
Bergesens Price guide to British Ceramics page 168.
Derby Porcelain Figures by Peter Bradshaw Pl. 167