The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Jug

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JUG, a vessel of earth, glass or metal, used for holding liquids and characterized by having one handle and a lip for ease in pouring. The origin of the word is uncertain. In slang the term is employed to denote a prison, and there is not wanting evidence that in this latter sense it is as adaptation of the Latin jug-um, a yoke. In the United States the word pitcher has superseded jug to a great extent. The Metropolitan Museum, New York, and the British Museum, London, contain very fine examples of this kind of vessel, in the latter is a remarkable bronze jug found at Kumasi in 1896, It was made in England in the reign of Richard II, whose arms and badge it bears. It is furnished with a lid, handle and spout. The ewer is a jug with a broad lip and was formerly in general use at table for pouring water over the hands after meals, a practice very essential when we remember that table forks were still unknown. Much variety in form and design appears in the early specimens, some are balanced on three feet and some take the form of animals. The 18th and l9th centuries saw the production in England of pottery vessels known as “Toby Jugs,” “Nelson Jugs,” etc., usually in the form of a stout old man with a hat the corners of which form the spouts.