Q: My pottery stein holds a half liter. It’s in the shape of a child wearing a monk’s hooded habit. He’s holding a couple of radishes or turnips in his left hand and what appears to be a book in his right. His head, the stein’s lid, has a pewter rim. Down the front of the child’s clothing there’s a long bib with the words “Gruss aus Munchen.” The only mark on the bottom is “1880.” What is the stein worth?
A: You have a “Munich Child” character stein. The “bib” down his front is a scapular, a traditional part of a monk’s garb, and the German phrase on the front can be roughly translated as “Regards from Munich.” The design is based on the German city’s coat of arms. Munich Child mugs, which can be in the traditional stein shape or figural, like yours, were first made in the last half of the 19th century. A mug like yours sold in 2011 for $334.