Butter dish

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A ceramic butter dish.

A butter dish is defined as "a usually round or rectangular dish often with a drainer and a cover for holding butter at table".[1] Before refrigerators existed, a covered dish made of crystal, silver, or china housed the butter.[2] The first butter dish was made by Simpson, Hall, Miller, and Co. around 1880 in Connecticut, out of silver.[3] These butter dishes were made to hold the traditional round shape of butter at the time and came with an "ice chamber" to keep the butter cold.[4] Another type of butter dish, a French butter dish, keeps butter fresh by using water to keep the butter away from the air, thereby keeping it fresh.[5] The water is placed into the base of the dish and the butter is put into a bell-shaped lid, creating an air seal.[6]


  1. ^ "Butter Dish". Merriam Webster. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  2. ^ "Dean's Corner-Butter Dishes and Butter: A History". Replacements, Ltd. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  3. ^ "Butter Dish". The National Museum of American History. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  4. ^ "What is the history of the silver butter dish and how is it used?". Beverly Bremer Silver Shop. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  5. ^ "French Butter Dishes". Interesting Thing of the Day. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 
  6. ^ "French Butter Dish". James Sloss Pottery. Retrieved 18 June 2017.