Marking is a way to indicate whether a product belongs to a particular factory. It began to appear on products in Europe after the creation of large factories. To be more precise, Meissen became the first manufactory in 1723, and other factories began to mark their products after it. At first, factories could either mark their products or not apply any signs, but already at the end of the 18th century, marking became mandatory and state regulation of this industry appeared. Manufacturers had to register with special government agencies.
Over time, the number of porcelain factories grew and some manufactories began to be in greater demand than others (for example, Meissen, Vienna), so the marking began to carry not only the function of belonging to the factory, but also the function of protection against forgery. Thus, double marking was born: one underglaze and the other overglaze. We will write about the differences between these types of markings.
The content of the markings is the name of the manufactories or the cities in which they are located (for example, Dresden); names or monograms of owners or officials, various crowns, coats of arms, figures of birds, fish, maritime and religious motifs, castles and various emblems.
Now let's take a closer look at the technologies for marking porcelain products. Share 5 technologies:
1. Underglaze painting. Marking is carried out on the surface of the product before glazing. At different times it was applied in different colors - blue or green. There are also stamps written by hand, which could differ greatly from product to product. This created some problems in compiling encyclopedias.
2. Overglaze painting. In this technology, the marking is done over the fired glaze. In this technology, there are also stamps written by hand, as well as different colors of marking, only they are not protected by layers of glaze.
3. Transfer printing. First, the image is engraved on a metal board, and only then transferred to products using special paper. Transfer printing was both underglaze and overglaze.
4. Indentation into the mass. In this technology, a stamp with a mark is pressed into the mass of unbaked clay. An indisputable advantage is the extremely difficult fake of such a brand. The first mention of indentation goes back to 1753.
5. Engraving or scratching. Engraving is done on soft clay with a sharp instrument.
Brands can also be divided into 3 groups:
1. Marks of masters.
3. Brands of quality.
We will write about the first two groups in our articles, then we will dwell on quality marks in more detail. One of the evidence of the high quality of the product was the monogram of the king and, as a rule, the factory of marking products for the royal court had the title "supplier of the royal court". Products of poor quality were marked with dashes next to or in defiance of the brand name. Fraudsters often tried to erase the line, but ended up leaving a mark on the icing. Products were divided into grades I and II (F and PS).
Considering the brand of the product and comparing it with information about what methods and paints were used to mark the products of a particular factory, one can only make a preliminary conclusion about the belonging of this product to a specific date of its manufacture. Sometimes stamps differ in different letter lengths or an additional dot, and sometimes they differ entirely in the brand name (for example, when changing the owner of a manufactory). That is why in our online store the range of years in which the figurine was made is indicated.