Irish Belleek Porcelain
Own a piece of authentic Irish craftsmanship with these Irish Belleek Porcelain pieces. Shop vases, mugs, lamps, bowls, teacups and more.Belleek Pottery Ltd is a porcelain company that began trading in 1884 as the Belleek Pottery Works Company Ltd in Belleek, County Fermanagh, in what was to become Northern Ireland. The factory produces porcelain that is characterised by its thinness, slightly iridescent surface and that the body is formulated with a significant proportion of frit.
Irish Belleek Porcelain was made in Ireland, other European countries, and the United States. The glaze is creamy yellow and appears wet. The first Belleek was made in 1857. All pieces listed here are Irish Belleek. The mark changed through the years. The first mark, black, dates from 1863 to 1890. The second mark, black, dates from 1891 to 1926 and includes the words Co. Fermanagh, Ireland. The third mark, black, dates from 1926 to 1946 and has the words Deanta in Eirinn. The fourth mark, same as the third mark but green, dates from 1946 to 1955. The fifth mark (second green mark) dates from 1955 to 1965 and has an R in a circle added in the upper right. The sixth mark (third green mark) dates from 1965 to 1981 and the words Co. Fermanagh have been omitted. The seventh mark, gold, was used from 1981 to 1992 and omits the words Deanta in Eirinn. The eighth mark, used from 1993 to 1996, is similar to the second mark but is printed in blue. The ninth mark, blue, includes the words Est. 1857 and the words Co. Fermanagh Ireland are omitted. The tenth mark, black, is similar to the ninth mark but includes the words Millennium 2000 and Ireland. It was used only in 2000. The eleventh mark, similar to the millennium mark but green, was introduced in 2001. The twelfth mark, black, is similar to the eleventh mark but has a banner above the mark with the words “Celebrating 150 Years.” It was used in 2007. The thirteenth trademark, used from 2008 to 2010, is similar to the twelfth but is brown and has no banner. The fourteenth mark, the Classic Belleek trademark, is similar to the twelfth but includes Belleek’s website address. The Belleek Living trademark was introduced in 2010 and is used on items from that giftware line. The word Belleek is now used only on the pieces made in Ireland even though earlier pieces from other countries were sometimes marked belleek. These early pieces are listed by manufacturer, such as Ceramic Art Co., Haviland, Lenox, Ott & Brewer, and Willets. The courts ruled in 1929 that only the Irish company could use the word Belleek with a capital “B.” Others are required to use belleek with a lowercase “b.”
Most Irish Belleek Porcelain are white or a shade of pearly white. Tea sets in the Echinus pattern originally were made to be completely white, but the pieces that were colored, like yours, were custom finished for special customers.
Belleek registered the Echinus pattern, one of the first designs ever to be registered, so no other unscrupulous manufacturer could copy it.
According to legend, Queen Victoria was so taken with the Echinus pattern that she ordered a tea set for herself and one as a gift for the empress of Germany. I’ve also heard stories that she ordered another set as a wedding present for one of her children. And it’s no wonder, since your teapot is certainly stunning. It is worth about $200.
Let’s eliminate the confusion about Irish Belleek Porcelain and American Belleek.
Irish Belleek Porcelain is a beautiful, lightweight, translucent porcelain made in a factory founded in Ireland by David McBirney. It has a creamy iridescence like a seashell. All kinds of articles were made — tea sets, figurines, centerpieces, etc.
Irish Belleek Porcelain enjoyed such popularity in America that there soon emerged imitators in this country. Ott & Brewer in Trenton, N.J.; Ceramic Art Pottery, later Lenox China; Willets Manufacturing Co., also of Trenton; and Knowles, Taylor & Knowles of East Liverpool, Ohio, were prominent among the American manufacturers of Belleek-type porcelain.
The American version is heavier and less translucent and is not likely to be mistaken for Irish Belleek.
The Irish Belleek is easy to identify by its marks, which show
some combination of a hound, tower, harp and shamrock. The American marks are also easy to recognize — they all are marked “Belleek” for obvious reasons. In addition, they usually include their own name, such as Willets, Lenox, Coxon, etc.
Strangely enough, American Belleek brings prices as high as and sometimes higher than Irish Belleek. There has been much more of the Irish Belleek made than all of the American versions combined.
Irish Belleek bearing the first mark (hound, harp and tower over Belleek) was made between 1863 and 1891. It is the most desirable and brings the highest prices.
American Belleek hasn’t been made in almost 100 years and brings higher prices than Irish Belleek made in the last 50 years.
Send your questions about antiques with picture(s), a detailed description, a stamped, self-addressed envelope and $1 per item to James G. McCollam, P.O. Box 1087, Notre Dame, Ind. 46556. All questions will be answered; published pictures cannot be returned. Mr. McCollam is a member of the Antique Appraisers Association of America.This Handcrafted Irish Belleek Tara China Photo Frame is decorated with handpainted shamrocks and Celtic Embossed bands. Great gift idea for newly weds, Anniversaries, New homes or even a Birthday Present for Collectors for any precious memories to share. Decorated with Belleeks famoulsy known handpainted green Irish shamrocks and embossed Celtic knots. Made in Ireland and presented in a Belleek Box. This Irish Piece Measures at 13 inches and has a photo window measuring of 8 inches x 10 inches. Belleek Pottery When you buy a piece of Belleek China you become the owner of a truly unique piece of Irish craftsmanship. No two pieces are ever the same. Based in County Fermanagh, Ireland, their materials and techniques have been handed down from generation to generation. Every handle, flower and brush stroke is lovingly applied by hand to create the look and feel that is uniquely Belleek. Only Belleek of the highest quality is ever put on sale. When Belleek was established in 1857 the pottery’s founder John Caldwell Bloomfield declared that any piece with even the slightest flaw should be destroyed. 151 years later, this golden principle of perfectionism is still strictly adhered to.