Dr Johnson’s House launches Japanese audio guide

Dr Johnson’s House now provides an audio tour in Japanese. The tour tells the story of writer Samuel Johnson and the house that he produced some of his most famous work in. Japanese speaking visitors can now listen to these stories accompanied with images on a MediaPacker™ audio guide.

Samuel Johnson lived at 17 Gough Square for over 10 years. During his time there, he wrote his most famous piece of work – ‘A Dictionary of the English Language’. The product of nine years of research, the dictionary was the most comprehensive and well-respected dictionary of English until the Oxford English Dictionary was published 173 years later.

Incredibly, the house and most of its original fittings still survive today, right down to the 314 year old anti-burglary mechanisms on the front door. This is despite the house being used as a bed and breakfast, converted into a printer’s workshop and then hit numerous times during the Blitz. It was saved from dereliction in 1911 by Liberal MP Cecil Harmsworth, who restored it and then opened it to the public in 1914.

One hundred years after the house opened and it is still welcoming visitors. However, the house’s reputation as an eighteenth century oasis in The City has now spread far beyond London. Along with American tourists keen to learn about one of England’s great writers, Japanese tourists are increasingly making a pilgrimage to the house. To accommodate visitors from Japan, the staff at Dr Johnson’s House decided to have the English audio tour translated into Japanese.

Curator Celine McDaid said: “We enjoy welcoming visitors from all over the world and are lucky to have so many visitors from Japan who are enthusiastic to learn about Dr Johnson. Like all of our visitors, they tell us that they enjoy the experience of stepping back three hundred years when they come into the house. We wanted to give them a more in-depth experience though, so had our audio tour translated into Japanese. We are looking forward to hearing their feedback. We are sure that Dr Johnson would have been a supporter of the translation, being a renowned travel writer. The guide is allowing him to continue enriching the journeys of modern day tourists over two hundred years after his death.”

Founder and Chief Executive of Imagineear, Andrew Nugée, said: “Having the tour of such a noted figure in English language translated into Japanese was a great opportunity for our translators and voices alike. We worked with Dr Johnson’s House three years ago to produce a guide in English. Being familiar with the tour and the house meant that we could produce something with a strong tone and appropriate cultural touch points. We hope that we have communicated the creativity, scholarship and often mischievousness of Dr Johnson that is so apparent to English speaking visitors to the house.”



For further information please contact:

Emma Thompson
Imagineear Ltd
Tel: +44 (0)845 680 7770

About Imagineear Ltd

Imagineear is a leading provider of multimedia content and technology solutions. We design and produce multilingual content, which we often integrate with existing archive materials, as well as live audio. We publish to smartphones, and to smart devices on-site, working with sports venues, cultural sites and the healthcare sector. In London and Amsterdam we have experienced content, hardware, software and data solution teams. Our goal is to help our clients deliver exceptional value and memorable experiences to their visitors, both on- and off-site. www.imagineear.com

About Dr Johnson’s House

Dr Johnson’s House is a small historic town house in the City of London. We are an independent, fully accredited museum and a registered charity (no. 1122396). The house has two members of staff and a dedicated team of volunteers who together run a vibrant programme of education, exhibitions and events.

Dr Johnson’s House
17 Gough Square


Celine McDaid
020 7353 3745