Villeroy & Boch, sometimes called by the name of the town where the factory is located (Mettlach), is not primarily known for character steins. Ask the average Mettlach collector which character steins Villeroy & Boch made, and they would probably name the Dog, the Monkey and the Owl. However, Villeroy & Boch did manufacture numerous other character steins, and these are listed at the end of this chapter.
In almost all cases, the Mettlach character steins are made exclusively of stoneware. The only exception may be the porcelain finial on the mold number 675 Barrel.
Most of the character steins manufactured by Villeroy & Boch are made in the ½ liter size. However, there are a few exceptions. One of the Tree Trunks and one of the Ears of Corn appear to be one liter in size while the modern Mettlach Abbey SCI Convention stein is a two-liter size.
There are two basic marks used on Villeroy & Boch figurals. These are the common chapel (or castle) mark and the Mercury mark. The chapel mark is generally impressed into the stein base while the Mercury mark is stamped on. Some of the earlier Tree Trunk steins probably carried an applied mark that often became detached over time.
PEWTER LID RIMS
The use of pewter lid rims on Mettlach character steins depended on the design of the piece. When needed, they were used. In cases where they might be a distraction, they were not. There is no general rule defining when a lid rim was used and when it was not.
Barrel (tapered), Radish finial
Ear of Corn
Ear of Corn
Tree Trunk, Flat base
Barrel, Cavalier Finial
Barrel, Tipsy Cavalier
Tree Trunk, Stein finial
Barrel, Drunken Cavalier
Barrel, Radish finial