This decanter is a characteristic example of the work of the Beilbys, a well-known Newcastle family of glass enamellers who began to develop the novel technique of firing enamels into glass about 1760.

The Beilby business was carried on at Amen Corner near Newcastle Cathedral. The vine and butterfly motifs which decorate the present piece are typical of the Beilby style, the butterfly on the neck being virtually William Beilby's signature.

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