“House Guest” Miniature Sampler,

“House Guest” Miniature Sampler,

England, circa 1820

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sampler size: 6” x 5½” • framed size: 7½” x 7” • price: $2400

While most miniature samplers have a charm by way of their diminutive scale, this example possesses yet another more subtle appeal in its verse, which admonishes the wayward houseguest, “I have no house room for the cursed swearer/ Nor any welcome for the false tale bearer/ The liar shall not in my presence dwell/ Such guests as those are only fit for hell.”

Two putti bearing a garland appear above the verse and tiny flower baskets, a stately country home on an expansive lawn, deer and trees complete the composition. At first glance the sampler seems to display the perfect symmetry often seen in English samplers; however, a lone bird is perched on the left, adding another bit of humor to this witty piece of needlework.

The sampler is worked in silk on wool and is in very good condition with some very minor loss to the wool and is conservation mounted in a gilded frame.

 

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