Dick Whittington character jug modeled by William K. Harper and produced by Royal Doulton of Burslem, England, in a 1989 limited edition of 5,000 commissioned by the Guild of Specialist China and Glass Retailers. A folk hero and the most famous Lord Mayor of London, Richard Whittington (1368-1423) was the youngest son of Sir William Whittington of Pauntley in Gloucestershire, England. At the age of thirteen, upon his father's death, he set out for London and apprenticed himself to a prosperous merchant. As described in a 1605 play, after his employer's cook mistreated him, he gave his cat to his employer to sell, then ran away to escape. The Bow Bells rang as he fled, as if to say, "Turn back, Whittington, Lord Mayor of London." He did and found his cat had brought a grand sum as a ship's ratter, making him wealthy. He then achieved great commercial success and is renowned for being the richest merchant of his day. During his long civil career, he was an alderman, sheriff, MP and Lord Mayor of London three times between 1397 and 1420. Whittington died a widower and childless. His estate of 5,000 pounds, an amount equivalent to several million now, was used for charitable purposes. A signpost to London, Bow Bells and sack of gold form the handle of the jug.