Madelena Antiques & Collectables

Rare Delphin Massier Majolica Rooster With Flag

Circa 1871. 21.3ins high, 12.6ins wide, 10.4ins depth. Rare, perhaps unique Delphin Massier Majolica figural which features a rooster with a French flag stood upon a German war helmet. Colouration: puce, ochre, blue, are predominant.

The piece bears maker's marks for the Delphin Massier pottery.

This piece commemorates the victory of France against Germany during the World War 1, 1918.

Interestingly though, Delphin Massier died in 1907, so he could not make this model specifically to commemorate the WW1 Victory of 1918. He must have made it at a much earlier date.

In fact, the helmet depicted on this piece, as well as the bayonet, correspond to the Franco-German war of 1871..... and France lost this war.

Our working hypothesis is that Delphin Massier created this model during the Franco-German war of 1870-1871 thinking that France was going to win. However Germany won the war and the model became "out of context" and therefore not saleable! So, the examples that had been produced were destroyed for the most part. And one, (or maybe more) were kept for the records.

Finally, after France's Victory in WW1, they found the opportunity to finish the model, including the date 1918. This all fits rather neatly, as WW1 was born of the Franco-German war of 1870.


Good. Two small flakes, one to tail feather, the other to bird on the helmet.

KILN EFFECT: shrinkage crack to the left foot.

RESTORATION: Filled chips to top section of rooster's beak, tongue and comb.

Filled chip to tip of flag pole.

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