Q: How was wallpaper made before we had printing on a large scale ? A: The paper was made by stenciling. Waterproof paper was cut in the desired designs, and different paints and inks were used to paint in the designs. Most surviving designs are from the second half of the 19th century. Q: We have a platter with an all-over blue pattern of a bird or turkey with a long neck. It is called the Phoenix bird in flight. Can you identify ? A: This is known as the Phoenix or turkey pattern. It is quite collectible and was made in Japan in the period from 1890 to 1915. Q: We have just received Tigerware from an estate in England. Can you identify ? A: It is mottled, brown, glazed ware made in Germany in the 17th century and exported to England. The tiger-striped pottery is hard to copy and expensive now. Q. Where was so-called onyx glass made? Why was it called onyx ? A: It was a beautiful glass made by Findlay Glass Co., in Finlay, Ohio, before 1900. It is usually a cream or opaque white glass, with silver or pink stylized flowers on the decoration. No particular reason for the name. It just sounded pretty. Q: We have a French clock with procelain base, and the word "Ansonia" on the clock. Can you identify ? A: The cases were ordered by the American firm, Ansonia Clock Co., to slip the works into. You have a case made in France and a clock made in America. They are rare and expensive now. Q: We recently bought pieces of china with a cobalt blue floral pattern and the name Alfred Meakin on the back. It is also semi-procelain. Would you evaluate it ? A: The china itself is Flow Blue, made in the mid-1800s, according to Petra Williams, the expert on Flow Blue china. Q: What is the meaning of a darning egg ? A: It means any ovoid form of glass, wood, ivory and sometimes precious metals and jade used for darning socks and other hard to get to places. Good collectible, and expensive. Q: We have a set of silver with each place setting having a hoe-like object. What were they used for ? A: They were used until the 1920s to push food onto the fork from the plate. The were called food pushers, and were better than using a piece of bread for the same purpose. Q: Please give the original defintion of an epergne ? A: Originally, it was a silver or porcelain table center with numerous dishes for fruits and sweetmeats. The early examples were fitted with candle-branches in addition to the containers fro food and leaves. Q: In a very old house we bought is some china called Astbury. Can you tell where and when it was made, and its value ? A: It was actually a classification of Stafforshire pottery combining white and red clay with a transparent glaze made from 1730 to 1740. It's highly desirable. Q: In a set of silver we received is what is called a cheese scoop. Can you tell the way of using it ? A: It's a short, curved blade with a silver shaft and an ivory or wood handle for cutting small pieces of cheese for serving at the table. Introduced in the late 18th century, it was later incorporated into the sets of table silver. Rare now. Q: What does one mean when the word "paste" is used for jewels in costume jewerly ? A: It means any semiprecious stone that has been cut or molded to resemble the precious stones, but is of glass. No reason for it to be called paste except long usage. Q: What is the difference in the teardrop drawer pulls from the Victorian and Queen Anne periods ? A: The Victorian drawer pulls are about an inch in diameter with wood and metal combination. The Queen Anne drawer pulls are slender, almost always of polished solid brass. Q: There is a china from France called Quimper. When was the firm in business ? A: The Henri Quimper Pottery Works went into business in 1905 and is still going strong with the same sort of pottery. Q: You said there was a listing of places that replace Halland and other china. Please give it . A: The listing is much too long to give in the column. Please send a long stamped evelope for the listing.