Sharing Shakespeare's Story
Elizabethan earthenware money pot
Money pots like this would have been used in theatres to collect entrance money. People known as "gatherers" would have stood at the entrances of the theatre, holding these boxes, and theatre goers would pay them a penny to see the performance as a "groundling", or if they wanted a seat they could have paid extra. You will see that the pot is entirely sealed - after the performance the box would be taken to the "box office" and smashed to retrieve the contents. This means that surviving examples are rare, and although this one looks intact, it actually has a hole in the bottom.