This Doulton sandwich plate has an impressed date ‘2 34’’ indicating that the plate
was manufactured in February 1934.
The Doulton mark (also underneath the clear glaze) is consistent with this date.
An ‘impressed’ date is applied by pressing a tool into the still plastic clay, and
is clearly the date of manufacture of the body of the ware, rather than the date
the piece was decorated.
Impressed dates are always underneath the glaze, unlike most printed or hand written
dates and pattern numbers, but this is not always the case.
Some Doulton wares have impressed dates in the form 7-13 (July 1913), or 7-08-21
(7th of August 1913). Provided the impressed dates are legible they are unambiguous
and can be interpreted as the date the shape was manufactured.
Often the impressed date is glaze-filled or was applied to a hardening clay making
only a shallow impression. In these circumstances the date may be hard to discover
and even harder to identify. Holding the ware at a glancing angle to a bright light
can often assist in highlighting the date.
Impressed dates are usually found on ornamental wares and on plates and saucers in
the tableware range.