Art News

Rare 17th Century Bowls Found at London Dig Site

LONDON (REUTERS).- Three 17th century ceramic bowls have been unearthed in an ancient quarter of London frequented by William Shakespeare and their workmanship ranks with high art of the period, experts who found them said on Monday. The richly decorated hand-painted Delftware bowls were excavated by archaeologists from a rubbish pit in a yard close to Southwark Cathedral and the site of old London Bridge on the south bank of the River Thames. The group consists of a charger decorated with tulips made in the 1660s, the decade of the Great Fire of London, a bowl depicting a boy tormenting a dog with a stick and another celebrating the marriage of one Nathaniel Townsend — an employee of a local industry, the Leathersellers Company, dated 1674. The bowl is adorned with the crest of the firm. The area where they were found was settled in pre-historic and Roman times and was a boisterous place in the 17th century famed for taverns, bear-baiting theatres and brothels. Roy Stephenson,