19th Century Tunbridge Ware Tea Caddy
19th century Tunbridge ware tea caddy, the main body of exotic timbers. The interior with two lidded tea compartments and a fitted cut glass mixing bowl.
c. 1820
The term Tunbridge Ware originally described wooden objects made as a sideline by woodworkers in the Tonbridge area for sale to the many visitors thronging to the nearby Wells. An early form often consisted of white wood items carrying printed labels depicting local scenes. The distinctive mosaic style, made by glueing sticks of different woods side by side and then slicing it into layers, came in the mid- 19th century, and it is this form that is now generally understood by the term ‘Tunbridge Ware’.Nowadays the ware is usually associated with Tunbridge Wells, but there is good reason to suggest it originated in Tonbridge. In 1847 Tunbridge Ware was described as the ‘only manufacture of consequence’ established in Tonbridge town. George Wise (1703-79), a turner, is known to have had a business in Tonbridge in 1746 at a time when the navigation of the Medway opened up greater markets for trade. With his son Thomas (1750-1807), also in the firm, he was advertising Tunbridge Ware as one of their products by 1784.
Height7.50 inch(19.0 cm)

Width12.25 inch(31.1 cm)

Depth6.50 inch(16.5 cm)
Ref No. 5406
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