Collecting Dutch Delftware - Part 2

Doreen & George Gallimore delve deeper into their Delftware with a Dutch family and their hidden secret?

When people think of Delftware the picture that comes into most of their minds is of a vase, plate, dish or jug, together with the image of a windmill or floral patterns and canal scenes painted in the traditional blue and white. They also think of reproductions of old Dutch Masters. In this article we aim to show some of the different and interesting pieces from our collection and the secret that they may hold.

This first picture shows a typical Dutch family group beside a windmill. Perhaps they are mother, father and daughter. What secret could a delightful scene like this possibly hold. We will describe each item in turn.




Below the figure of a Dutch tulip lady in hand painted polychrome Delft manufactured by the Zenith factory and dated c.1950.

You will notice the word 'Volendam' on the base. This puzzled us for a while as Volendam is near to Amsterdam. From information received from a Dutch acquaintance we learned that the reason for Volendam being on the base is that she is in the dress of that region. Volendam, Netherlands, is a picturesque village 12 miles (19 Km) north of Amsterdam on the Ijsselmeer. Old customs and dress remain to this day.



Here another Zenith Dutch lady figure, this time carrying a basket of produce from a shopping trip to the market. This is also in hand- painted polychrome Delft. Date is probably c.1950, but as it is difficult to date Zenith pieces, this is just a guess. As can be seen this figure has the word Zeeland on the base.


Again is in the dress of that region which, as our Dutch acquaintance tells us, can still be seen to this day. Zeeland is an agricultural province of South West Netherlands consisting of six islands connected by bridges and dams, with a land area of 653 square miles (1,691 sq. Km). The capital of Zeeland is Middleburg.




 The next item is a Zuid (PZH) windmill in the traditional Delft blue and white colour.






This windmill, with a canal scene around the side, is one of the most attractive we have seen to date. Again the date is 1950's as can be seen from the markings on the inside. 1950's Zuid pieces are hard to date, as the only date you can rely on is the one for 1953.


What then is the secret? The secret is that the three figures are all bottles, the windmill is not.

The two female figures, as can be seen from the base impression, held a Bols drink. You can also see, on the base, the place where they were filled, one still has the cork stopper in place.

The Dutch sailor bottle would have contained some sort of spirit and was distributed by the Valk & Co. Distillery Ltd., Schiedam, Holland. The head of the figure forms the stopper, with a cork attached.

"We hope that you enjoyed this insight into a different aspect of Dutch Delftware as much as we enjoyed collecting it."

Doreen & George Gallimore - January 2002.

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