Q: This bowl has been in the family for years. The first two lines of the nursery rhyme are printed above a picture of Jack and Jill going up the hill. The letters of the alphabet are around the rim. It’s 7 ½ inches in diameter and 1 ½ inch high and is marked “Made in Germany.”
A: Children’s dishes with letters of the alphabet around the rim were made from 1780 to 1860 to help children learn to read. They are called “ABC plates” or “alphabet plates.” They were made by many companies and are still being made. They often include transfer designs of nursery rhymes. This center design can be found on many children’s dishes. Although your bowl was made in Germany, it was clearly made for export since the words are in English. It probably dates from about 1890 to 1910. It’s worth about $15 to $30.
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