Norfolk

Van containing 1830s Johnson's dictionaries stolen in Norwich

Johnson's Dictionaries Image copyright Norfolk Police
Image caption Police say the dictionaries have an "unusual floral design" on the front cover

Police have warned people against buying a pair of 19th Century dictionaries which were in a van which was stolen.

The Johnson's dictionaries, which are worth about £300, date back to the 1830s and were in a delivery van which was stolen in Aylesbury Close, Norwich.

Norfolk Police said they were "not the sort of thing you see every day".

It is looking for a white male, aged 25-35, in connection with the theft of the van and its contents on 5 December.

Image copyright Norfolk Police
Image caption The dictionaries were stolen when the delivery driver was away from the car

The force said a Ford Transit van, with the number plate YE60 TTZ, was stolen at about 16:30 GMT. The van and other goods have yet to be recovered.

The dictionaries had recently been purchased at an auction and were en route to their new owner.

According to the British Library, Johnson's Dictionary "is one of the most famous dictionaries in history" and took its author, Samuel Johnson, eight years to compile.

PC Jamie Willets said: "The owner is keen to get them back so I would ask people, especially those working in specialist book shops, to be vigilant in case they are offered for sale."

Image copyright Norfolk Police
Image caption The dictionaries had recently been purchased at an auction

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