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[buh-leek] /bəˈlik/
a fragile Irish porcelain with a bright luster.
Also called Belleek ware.
1865-70; after Belleek, town in Northern Ireland where it is made Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for belleek ware


  1. a kind of thin fragile porcelain with a lustrous glaze
  2. (as modifier): a Belleek vase
Word Origin
named after Belleek, a town in Northern Ireland where such porcelain is made
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for belleek ware

Belleek ware

porcelain from the factory at Belleek, in Fermanagh, Ire. (now Northern Ireland). Extensive local deposits of white feldspar and Cornish china clay and the use of skilled labour from England contributed to the early success of this factory, established by David McBinney and Robert Williams Armstrong in 1857. The white lustreware and the large Parian statuary associated with Belleek both appeared in that first year. Belleek ornate figures, busts in the classical style, ware in natural forms (e.g., shells), and utilitarian ware were among the finest of Victorian eggshell porcelain. The factory became noted for its highly polished iridescent glaze (made under license from the patentee Jules-Joseph Brianchon of Paris) with a frostlike appearance; for a characteristic delicacy and subtlety, evident in the famous Belleek openwork baskets, which, in oval or round form, were hand modelled and embellished with flowers and foliage; and for ornamental motifs taken from marine life. Production continues to the present day, including traditional 19th-century designs

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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