There are four significant periods in Spode’s long history and knowing about these can help you date pieces of Spode china or pottery.From around the 1770s to 1833 Spode belonged to the Spode family and during this period pieces were usually marked as Spode by hand in a red colour, however sometimes it was in a different colour or impressed in the piece.(See: Shang Dynasty Art and its successor Zhou Dynasty Art.) Ceramicists experimented with techniques of high-fired glazing, creating pots with a brownish appearance which presaged Yueh ware, the later class of green ware known as celadon.Also, as prosperity increased and family groups coalesced to form new cities and principalities, a new market sprang up for the replacement of vessels and other objects cast in bronze to be made instead from cheaper clay, especially for home or funerary use.However, based on archeological excavations across south China, it appears that Chinese potters soon began to produce a range of delicate, polished and coloured vessels for more ceremonial purposes.These emerged in a number of Neolithic cultures which grew up along the Yellow and Yangtze river valleys, like the Dadiwan (6000 BCE), Pan-po (5000 BCE), Miao-ti-kou (4000-3000 BCE), and Yangshao (4000-2000 BCE), and especially the more advanced Longshan (3000-2000 BCE) and Dawenkou (4500-3500 BCE).
Impressed date marks consist of a letter which is the month and two numbers below it which indicate the year.
Decoration was achieved by stamping, impressing and other simple methods.
Motifs were typically abstract or geometric in nature.
From 1847 – 1970’s the company was owned by the Copeland family and as such pieces were often stamped Copeland Spode, but some were just marked as Copeland.
Spode has used hundreds of different styles of stamps and marks during its long history, there have been over seventy-five thousand different patterns recorded.