The underglaze Empire Works (E P Co) mark on the inside of the cover of this handpainted cheese dish dates the piece to between 1896 and 1912. The condition of both the cover, and the bottom plate tells me that the cheese dish was used very little if at all, and carefully stored as any kind of wear is a non issue. There is one hairline at the edge of the plate, about an inch in length and more easily seen on the bottom side. It is virtually invisible on the top side of the plate. There is also a hairline on the lid, about an inch long and running up from the bottom edge. There is also one small chip on the edge of the cover with NO crack running away from it. There is very fine crazing through out both pieces, but none is objectionable nor more than you might expect from pieces such as these at this age. The entire scene running around the cover is hand painted and signed by the artist, one T. Hill. There is absolutely no damage or wear to any of the decoration. My photos show everything I have described, as I want to hide nothing, but I still think the overall condition of this near 100 year old dish make it a great addition to any collection of English porcelain or cheese dishes in particular, in particular with the original art work on the lid. One picture combines the signature and the chip on the cover...please note, this was taken was a close up lens and the chip is not really as wide as the Grand Canyon. The two pieces are also both marked in ink, 701/5605, making them original to one another.
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