I am always looking out for new items of World War One commemorative china and this week I found a rather nice piece on Huddersfield secondhand market for £1:This is a particularly large and deep saucer, sadly without any maker’s marks but this is not uncommon for what was a piece of cheap souvenir ware. It is amazing to think that something that is now 98 years old is so cheap, but these objects are frequently ignored and sold amongst a mass of crockery that is best described as tat! This saucer features an attractive transfer design incorporating the flags of Great Britain, Belgium, France and the USA and commemorates the end of the war:The flags surround a central figure of Britannia with the words ‘peace’ above. The reasons for the conflict are in the scroll work beneath; liberty, justice, truth, honour. To modern eyes the dates seem a little odd: today we think of the Great War ending in 1918 but at the time this was seen merely as a ceasefire and it was always a worry that the conflict might restart. People therefore tended to see the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 as being the actual cessation of hostilities and this is often reflected in objects produced at the time such as this piece of china.
The Daily Mail of 12th November 1918 ran an editorial about the armistice:
The armistice which was signed yesterday marks the end of the war and the complete and overwhelming triumph of the cause of right, which is the cause of the Allies. It is not the final treaty of peace. That may not be signed for some weeks or months. It is the end of the slaughter and suffering.. ”The mills of God grind slowly, but they grind exceedingly small”. And to Him Who has so ordered events that as men look back this war seems like the culmination of all modern history and the final vindication of justice all will bow the head in praise. The Allies have triumphed, not because of their strength, though that was immense, but because they fought for a great an noble cause.