Villeroy & Boch Porcelain Lamp Base
This gorgeous baluster shaped lamp base was made by Villeroy and Boch's factory in Mettlach, Germany. The pattern is Paon, which means "peacock' in French, a logical name given the pretty peacocks in the cartouches on each side. The background is a pale minty green, with the shoulder and the base encircled by panels and scrolls of foliage and flowers.
The lamp base stands 9 inches tall, with a mouth opening 2 1/2 inches across and a base 3 3/4 inches in diameter. The circumference around the shoulder is 20 inches and it weighs 2 pounds, 4 ounces. There are no chips, cracks, stains or discolorations, or crazing--it displays like new. It has a hole in the bottom for the lamp cord and could be easily made into one again. To use the vase for flowers, stick to dried stems or silk ones, as we have for our photo.
This pattern, like those of most of V&B's porcelains, is a combination of copperplate printing and hand painting. The pink, blue and mustardy yellow areas are hand painted; the rest is a transfer. The green printed mark on bottom, commonly called the "Mercury" mark, dates from the 1960's. It reads "Mettlacher Kupferdruck-Unterglasurdekor- Seit 1748" (German for "Mettlach Copper Print Underglaze Decor Since 1748") -Made in Germany handausgemalt (German for hand painted). The words encircle the company logo that reads "Villeroy and Boch" and "Mettlach."
A bit of history:
The original company was founded in 1748 by Francois Boch and began using transfer printing on porcelain from engraved copper plates in 1824. A merger in 1836 created the firm of Villeroy and Boch. They've been famous ever since for the high quality and beauty of their ceramics.