Staffordshire pearlware pottery Paul Pry, circa 1820

Paul Pry (1825), a farce in three acts, was the most notable play written by 19th-century English playwright John Poole. It premiered in London on 13 September 1825 at the Haymarket Theatre and ran 114 performances. The play continued to be popular until the early 1870s. In the original 1825 London production, Madame Vestris sang “Cherry Ripe”, and John Liston portrayed the title character. His costume included striped pants, Hessian boots, top hat, and tailcoat. Liston’s portrayal was so popular that images of Liston as Pry appeared on signs, shops, warehouses, handkerchiefs, and snuff boxes. Porcelain and pearlware factories in Staffordshire, Rockingham, Derby and Worcestershire produced figurines of Liston as Pry. The Liston as Pry image was even stamped on butter.

Height: 6 ¾”

Condition: Top of umbrella and base chips restored