Blue and white Delft plate. The decoration commemorates the Battle of Dogger Bank, a sea battle fought between the Dutch and the British in 1781. The flag is an abbreviation for Vice Admiral Johan Zoutman, who led the Dutch naval forces against those under Vice Admiral Sir Hyde Parker for the British.
Dogger Bank is an area of shallow water located in the North Sea, about 75 miles off the east coast of England. An important fishing and shipping area, it's been the site of naval battles and skirmishes from the 17th c. through WWI. In 1780 the British declared war on the Dutch. The Dutch had been supplying the Americans in their War of Independence and in response, the British blockaded the Dutch coast. On August 5, 1781, British and Dutch forces clashed here, both suffering heavy losses and both claiming victory.
The plate shows a British ship on the right firing into Zoutman in the middle, who is defending the merchant ship on the left. Incidentally, 26 year old William Bligh, of "Mutiny on the Bounty" fame, fought in the battle under Vice Admiral Parker.
Today, Dogger Bank is the proposed site for one of the largest off-shore wind farms in the world.
Holland c. 1781
Condition: Typical rim chips and abrasions. No cracks or restoration.