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FAENZA: The majolica of Faenza produced at the end of the 15th century is perhaps the most highly prized of all of the beautiful ceramic productions of the best period of the art of Italy. The pigments used are generally blue, red and yellow. A revival of the art of making this majolica took place here in 1850 and the old models and decorations were successfully reproduced. The municipal art gallery contains fine old pieces.
FAIENCE: A greatly misused French term, properly applied to French tin-enameled wares. By many, it is now applied to every kind of glazed earthenware excepting porcelain. The name probably derived from Faerzza in Italy, one of the many cities famous for medieval pottery, and still manufacturing it. See FRENCH FAIENCE and MAJOLICA.
FAIENCE MANUUFACTURING CO.: At Greenpoint, Lang Island, started work in 1880. In 1884, Edward Lycett, formerly of Staffordshire, England, joined the company and. under his able direction a fine grade of porcelain was produced, better glazes, new shapes and decorations. One of his discoveries was the method of making the reflecting glaze of the ancient Persian tiling.
FELDSPAR: A naturally occurring mineral, mostly a potassium aluminum silicate. It is fusible at a great heat, melting into a milky white, glass-like substance, and is used with kaolin to produce porcelain.
FENTON (Staffordshire): This is a large district where pottery has been made from very early times and in the 18th century there were several factories there. Thomas Whieldon, Thomas Green and John Barker had potteries there, and the pottery of Felix Pratt produced an excellent creamcolored ware with a bluish glaze, known as Pratt's ware (q.v.) from 1775 to about 1820. C. J. Mason & Co. also established a factory here in 1825 for the production of their ironstone china (q.v.). See STAFFORDSHIRE.
FIGURES: Both earthenware and porcelain were freely used in the production of figures. Figures in enameled earthenware had been made in Italy in Renaissance times and later in Holland. In China, porcelain had long been employed for this purpose. The Meissen factory at Dresden was the first in Europe to make figures of porcelain in the second quarter of the 18th century. To Kandler, the modeler, can be given the credit for most of the styles seen in all mid-century china figures. In England the potters of Bow, Chelsea and Derby, at first taking their examples from Meissen models, soon began to model subjects after English design.
In pottery, about the middle of the 18th century, English potters began to model figures of a higher artistic merit than the work of Astbury and Whieldon, and the figures of Ralph Wood, John Turner, Ralph Salt and many other of the Staffordshire (q.v.) potters are of marked interest for fine modeling and delicate coloring.
FLAMBE: The term is applied to pottery or porcelain which depends for its decorative effect upon the cloudy or shaded or splashed color of the glaze. The Chinese were the first to produce this decoration but it has been adopted by both English and French potteries.
FLINT: A form of silica used in the pottery industry. When calcined and ground, it produces a white infusible powder used for whitening the body. It was first used about 1720 by John Astbury and was the means of great improvement in earthenware.
FLORENCE (MEDICI) PORCELAIN: Towards the end of the 16th century the Medici princes made experiments in porcelain in imitation of that of China. The porcelain that was produced is of soft and creamy paste decorated in shaded under-glaze blues, with designs of Oriental motifs in Italian rendering. This was the first European porcelain of which we have certain knowledge. Specimens of this porcelain are exceedingly rare. There are said to be only forty specimens now remaining. The factory closed shortly after 1600.
FLUX: A chemical substance, for example, fluorspar, introduced into the color bases to enable them to fuse at comparatively low temperatures in enameling. Other materials used for fluxes are feldspar, borax, alkaline carbonates and preparations of bismuth.
FONTAINEBLEAU WARE: At Avon, near Fontainebleau, there was a considerable manufacture of faience as early as 1608. The production seems to have been mostly small figures and other pieces in imitation of Palissy. Another pottery was at Belleville where Dresden models and styles of decoration were copied.
FRANKENTHAL PORCELAIN: A hard-paste porcelain which ranked among the best of German porcelains was made at a factory established here in 1755. The paste is not so white or so hard looking as Meissen and the coloring is simpler. Rich dark blue as ground color was used, and sometimes the gilding was in two shades of gold. The factory was closed before 1800.
FRENCH FAIENCE: Decorative earthenware of this kind was produced at various French potteries. That of Saint Porchaire (q.v.) is one of the earliest, about 1520, followed by the unique pieces of Bernard Palissy (q.v., PART 6). Lyons, Nevers, Rouen, Marseilles, Paris and other places produced admirable work, and for three centuries the industry commanded the skill and good taste of artists and sculptors. The standard is now lower.
FRENCH PORCELAIN: See PORCELAIN, French.
FRENCH POTTERY: See POTTERY, French.
FRIT PASTE: This was a paste used in old Worcester made by a Irlixture of sand, gypsum, soda, salt and niter, melted together in a mass. After cooling it was then broken and pulverized to be mixed with the clay which gave the paste its body. The frit gave it translucency.
FROG MUGS: Drinking mugs with a small model of a frog fixed to the inside, near the bottom. They were made at Leeds, Sunderland, Nottingham, and at other English potteries.
FUDDLING CUPS: Nests of three to six cups, cemented together with an opening in them so that the drinker must empty all or none of them. It was an early Staffordshire device.
FULHAM WARE: John Dwight produced (1671-1703) at Fulham, a suburb of London, white stoneware busts and Figures, red unglazed ware, brown stoneware jugs and mugs. Some of this brown ware was salt-glazed, probably the earliest in England. Dwight also received a patent for transparent earthenware (porcelain) and for a stoneware which he called "Cologne" ware. He was one of the greatest of English patters and to him must be attributed the foundation of an important industry. His magnificent life-size bust of Prince Rupert, now in the British Museum, excites the wonder and admiration of modern potters. All specimens of his make are very rare. The pottery continued in existence long after Dwight's death.
FURSTENBERG PORCELAIN: A factory for making a hard-paste porcelain was started here about 1750 and it is still in operation. The production was somewhat like Meissen but coarser. Some of the pieces were also modeled after Bow and Chelsea English china and the French Sevres.