Collection Online
Bacchanalian boys, plaque
stoneware (blue jasper)
16.0 × 59.0 cm
Place/s of Execution
Staffordshire, England
impressed (diagonally) in reverse c.: WEDGWOOD
Accession Number
International Decorative Arts
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Presented through The Art Foundation of Victoria by Mrs Norma Deutsher, Governor, 1994
This digital record has been made available on NGV Collection Online through the generous support of Digitisation Champion Ms Carol Grigor through Metal Manufactures Limited
Gallery location
Not on display
Physical description
Rectangular solid blue plaque showing eight young boys at play, in five panels divided by trees and columns supporting panther skins.
The drapery that forms the upper border of this plaque is playfully looped between trees and vases set on columns, its ends decoratively interpreted as if representing the skins of panthers, the panther being traditionally associated with Bacchus, the Roman god of wine. The plaque is full of Classical imagery, including the columns topped with covered vases and the young boys and satyrs engaged in Bacchic revelry; to the right a young Bacchus holding his thyrsus (fennel staff) is being held aloft. Wedgwood’s 1787 Catalogue, lists a ‘Bacchanalian tablet’ of boys ‘under arbours, with panthers’ skins in festoons’.