Q&A on collecting
Cheshire Cheese was popular inn
Q: We inherited this porcelain plate that is titled “Dr. Johnson at The Cheshire Cheese.” It is broken, and I was wondering if it is valuable enough to have it restored. Our family name is Boswell. We are related to James Boswell, who wrote about Dr. Samuel Johnson. Marked on the back of the plate is a side view of a lion wearing a crown. Beneath the lion is a large crown. Also included with the mark are the words: “Royal Doulton — England” and a written number that is very difficult to read. It seems to be “p3/27.”
Any information you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
A: Your plate was made by Royal Doulton in England. The company used this mark from 1902 to 1930. The number is a series number and is probably D3123. Samuel Johnson was born in England and was an essayist, writer and lexicographer. He was the author of the first significant English dictionary. Johnson and a group of poets, writers and philosophers met at inns for conversations. One of the meeting places was Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese on Fleet Street in London. Johnson and author/biographer James Boswell were friends. Boswell wrote the famous biography “The Life of Samuel Johnson.”