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Print - Bookplate of John William Watson
  • Bookplate of John William Watson
    Phillips Barrett, W.
  • Enlarge image

Bookplate of John William Watson

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (made)

  • Date:

    1901 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Phillips Barrett, W.

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mr. Norman Meredith

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level H, case 93, shelf A, box 114A

The open book at the bottom of the bookplate entitled 'Dorothy Foster' by Walter Besant relates to the Foster or Forster family, governors of Bamburgh Castle from the 12th century. Thomas Forster (1659–1725), High Sheriff of Northumberland, built a new manor house in the early 18th century, which is the Georgian Grecian-style house depicted in the bookplate. The Forsters lived on the estate for over 600 years until they were ruined by the financial excesses of Sir William Forster (d 1700) and the involvement of Thomas Forster (1683–1738) in the Jacobite uprising of 1715. It was then acquired by the Watson family.

Physical description

Bookplate of John William Watson, inscribed with the engraver's initials and date 'Inv. W.P.B. 1901'. A Georgian, Grecian-style country house is depicted with a sign reading Adderstone Hall. The left side of the plate has a border of roses along the side, leading to a coat of arms at the bottom. There is also a helmet from a suit of armour in the left corner with an ornate metal arm sprouting from the top of the helmet, clutching a sort of branch. There are a number of books stacked at the bottom of the plate and one is open to read 'Dorothy Foster - Besant' alongside two inscriptions in Latin.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (made)


1901 (made)


Phillips Barrett, W.

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

Inv. W.P.B. 1901

hic habitabo quia hic felicitas mea
loosely translated as 'Here dwells happiness'

Deum Time, Regem Honora
Fear God, Honour the King


Height: 3.875 in, Width: 3 in

Descriptive line

Engraved bookplate of John William Watson, signed and dated Inv. W.P.B. 1901.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Victoria & Albert Museum Department of Engraving Illustration and Design & Department of Paintings, Accessions 1946. London: Published under the Authority of the Ministry of Education, 1949.





Subjects depicted

Country house; Flowers; Coat of arms


Prints; Books


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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