Pair of Lions (one of two)

Lyman, Fenton & Company (1849-1852) or United States Pottery Company (1853-1858), Bennington, Vermont, American, 19th century
Daniel Greatbatch (possible modeler), American (born England), active about 1838 - 1861



Green and amber "flint enamal" lead glaze on white earthenware

Overall: 7 3/16 × 10 1/2 × 4 5/8 in. (18.3 × 26.7 × 11.7 cm)

Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth: Purchased through the Katharine T. and Merrill G. Beede 1929 Fund



Place Made: United States, North America


19th century

Object Name


Research Area

Decorative Arts

Not on view


By the mid-nineteenth century Bennington, Vermont—long a center for ceramic production—had become one of the foremost pottery producers nationally, known especially for affordable utilitarian wares and ornamental press-molded figural sculptures intended for middle class homes. Pairs of lions, such as those seen here, were especially well-suited to adorn a fireplace mantel. The lions’ basic form, with one paw resting on a globe—a gesture evoking the lion’s long-held association with dominion—derived from popular English ceramic models made in Staffordshire. These, in turn, were based on the famed Medici lion sculptures in Florence. One can only surmise whether in their day these engaging figurines sparked any of the age-old associations of lions with kingship, power, sovereignty, and protection. It seems unlikely that in a then relatively young democracy the original owners would have embraced a link with monarchy, but who could deny the appeal of a pair of watchful sentinels enlivening and guarding the household?

From the 2019 exhibition American Art, Colonial to Modern, curated by Barbara J. MacAdam, Jonathan L. Cohen Curator of American Art

Exhibition History

American Art, Colonial to Modern, Israel Sack Gallery and Rush Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, January 26, 2019-September 12, 2021.


Garth's Auctioneers & Appraisers, Delaware, Ohio, September 2, 2005; private collectoin; sold to Hirschl & Adler, New York, 2015; sold to present collection, 2016.

This record is part of an active database that includes information from historic documentation that may not have been recently reviewed. Information may be inaccurate or incomplete. We also acknowledge some language and imagery may be offensive, violent, or discriminatory. These records reflect the institution’s history or the views of artists or scholars, past and present. Our collections research is ongoing.

We welcome questions, feedback, and suggestions for improvement. Please contact us at: