Antique A W Pugin Minton English Encaustic Tile


An encaustic tile designed by A W Pugin for the Earl of Shrewsbury at Alton Towers.  This designs is of a rampant lion surround by a border

This is one of two tiles in our possession. An Identical pair are on display in the V&A Museum, London, Ceramics, Room 143, The Timothy Sainsbury Gallery, case 19, shelf 1

Exhibited in Pugin: A Gothic Passion, V&A, 1994.

Graves, Alun. Tiles and Tilework of Europe. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 2002, fig 5.3, p114.

Paul Atterbury and Clive Wainwright (eds.), Pugin: A Gothic Passion, New Haven and London, 1994, p.145-6.

Hans van Lemmen ‘Encaustic Tiles, in Minton Tiles 1835-1935, Stoke-on-Trent, p.8-10

Condition Report

Minor chips, wear and scuffs.


Gothic Revival

Country of Origin

Stoke-on-Trent, England


A. W. Pugin, born 1812 – died 1852 (designer)

Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin  (1 March 1812 – 14 September 1852) was an English Architect, designer, artist, and critic who is principally remembered for his pioneering role in the Gothic Revival style of architecture.

His work culminated in designing the interior of the Palace of Westminster in London, England and its iconic clock tower, which houses the bell known as Big Ben. Pugin designed many churches in England. He also created Alton Castle, Staffordshire.


Mintons was a major company in Staffordshire Pottery, “Europe’s leading ceramic factory during the Victorian era”,an independent business from 1793 to 1968. It was a leader in ceramic design, working in a number of different ceramic bodies, decorative techniques. As well as pottery vessels and sculptures, the firm was a leading manufacturer of tiles and other architectural ceramics, producing work for both the Houses of Parliament and United States Capitol

Alton Castle / Alton Towers

After the 15th Earl of Shrewsbury died in 1827, he was succeeded by his nephew, John Talbot, 16th Earl of Shrewsbury, who completed the gardens and house started by his uncle. In 1831, the Talbots’ principal residence in Heythrop burned down. The 16th earl then came to live at Alton permanently, bringing everything that could be saved from Heythrop. Noted architect Augustus Pugin designed a new entrance hall, banqueting hall and various other rooms, extending the house further. The property was renamed Alton Towers.

In 1852, following the death of the 16th Earl, Alton Towers was briefly inherited by his cousin, Bertram. But when he died four years later at the young age of 24, all work on the house ceased. As there was no direct heir to the estate, Bertram left the earldom and Alton Towers to a younger son of the Duke of Norfolk. This was contested by Henry Chetwynd-Talbot, a distant cousin of the late earl, who filed a legal writ to determine lawful ownership of Alton Towers. As the contents of the house were not contested, everything within the house was auctioned off in a 29-day sale of 4,000 lots.

Date of Manufacture


Materials and Techniques

Earthenware, Glaze, inlaid decoration


-Wear consistent with age and use

-Minor Losses, scuffs and scratches


Height 15 cm

Width 15 cm

Depth 2.5 cm

Weight 1 Kg

Price: £

Provenance: Yes

Stock No: 23222


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