This medieval green-glazed jug was discovered in 1975 during excavation of an area between the early line of the town defences and Bristol Castle, and just to the north of the medieval church of St. Peter. This type of pottery is generally known as Ham Green ware - its name being taken from a kiln site excavated in a field next to Ham Green Hospital in the 1950s. Cooking pots, bowls, lamps and dripping trays were all made of this type of pottery but,whatever their shape or size, all them were hand made and jugs were the most commonly produced. They generally date to between the middle of the 12th and the end of the 13th centuries.
Ham Green jugs are usually glazed and often decorated with a variety of designs including both human and animal figures, as well as floral designs over a grooved or hatched background. The figures on this pot represent an archer with his bow ready to fire on a stag and doe. Although all these figures are made of are applied strips of clay the potter has managed to convey a real sense of fear in the eyes of the stag as it tries to escape its fate.
Significantly this type of pottery was very successfully exported in large quantities to both South Wales and the east coast of Ireland. The sheer number of pieces found in Ireland alone testify to the both importance and success of Bristol's trading activities over 800 years ago. The jug is at the very start of the story of trade and exchange, which has not only shaped the city but the rest of the world.