What does the writing mean?

This spongeware bowl was found, in pieces, within the garden of Eddie’s House and has been reassembled using conservation-grade glue so that it can be displayed within our visitor centre.


The motto on this bowl, “Your e’e is waur to fill than your wame” translates to “Your eye is worse to fill than your stomach”.



Spongeware ceramics were made quickly by unskilled workers, and as such the pottery was cheap to buy and commonly found in rural homes and farmhouses. It’s really difficult to match a spongeware piece to where it was made as very few have makers marks, and it’s thought that this is because some of the larger pottery manufacturers were embarrassed to have been making such low-class vessels.


There are quite a few surviving examples of similar bowls to ours, generally classified as ‘green banded bowls’, including one with the same motto within the collection of the Hunterian Museum in Glasgow. But none seem to have maker’s marks, and the best we can say for now is that they were probably made within Scotland.



We’ve also got fragments of a small cup with the same writing on including the words ‘many’ and ‘words’ but unfortunately there aren’t enough sherds to piece it back together.