Early 20th Century Folk Art Memory Jug
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A fascinating early 20th century folk art memory jug, decorated with hundreds of personal items.
A memory jug is a folk art form that is believed to memorialise the dead. It is a general term for a vessel whose surface is adorned with an assortment of broken china, glass shards, and small objects, especially items associated with a dead person.
Most of the existing memory jugs date back no further than the early 20th century, and the makers of most are unknown.
Some memory jugs have been found on graves, as it was believed that people were connected to the spirit world by way of water, and consequently graves would be decorated with containers holding water, such as jugs, vases, or shells, as a way to help a dead person's spirit through to the afterlife. Personal possessions were often broken to help release the individual's spirit.
This particular example appears to date from around the 1920’s and is decorated with hundreds of items, including frozen charlotte doll heads, brooches, coins, seeds, buttons and shells.
Condition is commensurate with age and use. Structurally sound. Some small pieces have fallen away and there are some hairline cracks to the base. But a good piece overall. Just quite delicate because of all of the pieces attached to it.
Measures 14cm x 16cm x 7cm
Weighs 950 grams