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The history of the Vase of Anduze

Ancestral know-how of the Cevennes Gate

To know everything about the Vase d’Anduze, this typically Cevennes pottery which has crossed the history and remains a pledge of quality and authenticity. Learn to recognize it and identify the elements that make it up.

From legend to tradition

Anduze has been recognized since the Middle Ages as an important center of pottery production, in crockery of all kinds, tiles and drainpipes, oil jars. It was in the seventeenth century that the famous Vase d’Anduze was born, intended to accommodate orange and lemon trees.

This centuries-old tradition has forged a real myth, the legend says that this horticultural vase would be contemporary with Henry IV (1610) and would have been invented by a potter from Anduze who would have been inspired by Italian vases of the Medici type.
Another legend claims that Vases from Anduze adorned the gardens of Versailles during the time of the Sun King. The accounts of the king’s house do not mention any orders to Anduze, on the other hand shards found on site indicate their presence in the great Parisian gardens.

Throughout the nineteenth century, the activity is flourishing and many potters in the region of Anduze begin to produce garden vases. It is even a specialty that distinguishes them from other Languedoc productions.

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The reputation of the Vase d’Anduze becomes so great that it takes pride of place in many of the parks and orange groves of the region and quickly becomes very successful in other provinces and then abroad.

Always produced in the respect of the tradition this vase is today exported all over the world.

The Vase of Anduze linked to great families of potters

Historically there were a dozen large families of manufacturers of the Anduze Vase. The potters were distributed mainly in the communes of Anduze, St-Jean-du-Gard and Tornac.

At the beginning of the 1st Empire, the production of orange vases was the specialty of two manufacturers: Louis Etienne Boisset and Jean Gautier.

In 1850, one of the most prosperous periods for the Vase d’Anduze, there were about thirty potters (bosses and workers combined) who produced this famous Vase d’Anduze.

Developments in the history of the Vase of Anduze

The Vase of Anduze has such an identity that its shape has changed little since its origin. However some details allow to locate approximately in time a manufacture.


The vases on molded pedestals have an upturned bell shape.
The oldest Vase d’Anduze have a stockier shape that becomes more refined during the second half of the 19th century and gives these vases their current and known shape.


On the oldest vases, it is possible to see garlands starting from a mascaron presenting a lion’s nose. The decoration of the Vase of Anduze combines floral decorations, fleur-de-lis and cherubs. These garlands can be found on vases dated from the late 18th century.

The medallions

Or decorative cartouches, they grow in size over time and generally constitute the potter’s signature. From the end of the 18th century, a handwritten signature often dated completes the identification of the vase.


Historically, the most common height of the Anduze Vase is 80 cm. However, smaller ones can be found. The size of the vase is related to the fact that in winter, the orange trees are brought in under greenhouses.

The Route of the Vase of Anduze

and today's pottery

Ten potteries that perpetuate ancestral gestures are highlighted through the Anduze Vase route in a protective approach. This tourist route is the only way to guarantee visitors a quality Vase d’Anduze, made in the respect of tradition.

Today, manufacturers have been able to innovate to adapt to current trends and the desires of more contemporary interior decoration… While respecting the ancestral gestures, each pottery is distinguished through the glazes, patinas or shaping techniques.

Discover these potteries on the sites of the Route du Vase d’Anduze.

Logo Landscape Color Route du Vase d'Anduze

How to recognize a “true” Anduze Vase

The Anduze Vase is characterized by its shape of an upturned bell on a pedestal, whose body is decorated with macaroons and garlands connected by a net. The vase has several horizontal striations in the lower part of the vase and under the neck.

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