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William Morris Tile

Tree of Knowledge Tile Panel Designed by William De Morgan (Chelsea Period)

Tree of Knowledge Tile Panel

The Tree of Knowledge tile panel is from De Morgan's Chelsea (early) period. This is an unusual tile for the period, as the majority of Chelsea tiles are floral or naturalistic designs. Animals and fantastic creatures are more characteristic of his Merton Abby and especially his Fulham (late) period.

Application: These tiles are suitable for interior use and can be installed on walls, backsplashes, showers, and fireplace surrounds.

Tree of Knowledge

Title: William De Morgan : Tree of Knowledge

Panels: 3 or 4 tiles in a vertical panel

Tile: Ceramic

Size: 6 inch (15.24 cm) or 8 inch (20.32 cm) square tiles, 8 x 6 inch rectangular tiles

Thickness: 3/8 inch (1 cm)

Colors: Can be modified slightly. See How to Order Tile.

Availability: Can usually be shipped in about a week.


Six Inch Tile Panel (3 tiles) : $370 / $690 (two facing panels, 6 tiles)

Eight Inch Tile Panel (3 tiles): $ $425 / $825 (two facing panels, 6 tiles)

Eight x Six Inch Tile Panel (4 tiles): $ $515 / $915 (two facing panels, 8 tiles)

Marble (6 inch only): $460 / $880 (two facing panels)

How to Order a Sample Tile

I can make you a sample tile for panels and backsplashes. Here's how to get a sample tile:

shopping basketOrder a panel/backsplash sample. When you've finished your checkout, you'll be redirected to a page where you can tell me the backplash or panel you are interested in and ask any questions you might have.

The shipping calculator should work for the US and Canada. If it's off, we can settle up when I ship your order. For other countries, contact me so I can send you an invoice for your sample.

Keepsake Gift Box

Alternatively, you can order a full-size individual tile on a hardwood gift box. Most have locks and keys.

William De Morgan Ducks Keepsake Box

About this tile

Tree of Knowledge was one of the first tile sets I made a decade ago. If you've been here before, you'll notice this reproduction is different from the earlier version. I've learned things and I've restored it to what I believe were the original colors, based on the cadmium red and yellow that were used to make the original colors.

The William De Morgan Tree of Knowledge is the second runner up for the honor of being my most stolen web image (The Fantastic Bird and Winged Beast or Grphyon are the others). It is disheartening to find images of tiles I've restored taken from my website used to sell small tiles on Bonanza, Etsy, and Ebay at a tenth of the cost of the materials I use.

Claims made about their suitability for exterior applications are simply not true; they are ceramic and therefore porous and will not tolerate freezes and thaws. Although I do not watermark my images, I know the tiles I've restored as if they were children -- I've worked on them for weeks or months and in two cases, years. What is being sold there is either an enlargement of a my web image (and that will not go well) or a copy of a photo of a tile that hasn't been restored.

One thing you cannot see above is that color wraps around the edge of the tile. Grout shrinks as it dries and may shrink slightly more over time, so this ensure that a line of white edging will not appear.

Tiles can appear misaligned at installation time because grout line were not taken into account when the tile was made. When you consider panel tiles, look to see that the tiles will align correctly when grouted, something that will not happen if tiles are "printed" because such "printing" will print over the grout lines, losing the part of the image that "prints" in the small space between tiles. This is even more pronounced if you discover you need to add a tenth of an inch so that the panels line up with the top and bottom field tiles. And it is particularly unfortunate when it's an eye or a part of a face that is lost.