This superb 19th century pottery example of the Sussex pig was most probably made under the direction of Caroline Mitchel at the Belle-View-Pottery Rye and like many of her other creations has been decorated with manganese-oxide, while it remains in excellent original condition, with no scratches, chips or repairs. Its head is secured by a dowel.
These Sussex pigs allegedly have ancient origins, while many later examples from the 19th century can be found in national and provincial museums. A very similar example from the ‘Truro County Museum’ is illustrated in Geoffrey Wills book on English Pottery. On page 40 he quotes Llewellyn Jewitt – writing in 1878: “In Sussex these pigs are used at weddings when each guest is invited to ‘drink a hogshead of beer to the health of the bride’; and at other social and convivial occasions each person is expected to drink this cup – or hog’s head – full of liquor.”