COADE, Eleanor, English stonemason. In 1789 she founded the Coade factory in London, and made the first commercially successful artificial stone. It was durable and malleable, strong and weatherproof but looked like stone. Her father had been in that trade, so Eleanor must have adapted some of his ideas. The formula was secret then, but is now understood. The technique involved use of components that had already been kiln-fired. Then when fired a second time in a complex mix there was no shrinkage. Her product was called Lithodipyra Terra-Cotta, meaning stone-fired-twice. This material was much used by architects for statue making, since it was more durable than stone. The family business continued until 1951 when the site was needed for the Festival of Britain (it is now Battersea Park).
Coade Stone Lion