According to my online research, a spill vase is a small cylindrical vase or wall-hanging pocket vase for containing splints, spills, and tapers used for transferring fire: for example, to light a candle or pipe from a lit fire in the fireplace. From the documentary record, spill vases probably date back to the 15th century, though the heyday of specially made vases is the 19th century.
Once artisans began embellishing the porcelain receptacles, the end results were almost unrecognizable from their original mundane use. It’s the shape of this vase (as well as the fact that it looks so beautiful when empty) that determines its original intent as a spill vase. Done in fine porcelain, with great detail, hand-painted and in very good condition, our FIGURAL SPILL VASE has a young boy stretching up to reach the phone. Read more about it HERE.