Alphabet and Motif Sampler

initialed I.R.,
Scotland, 1793

sampler size: 17¼" x 12" • framed size: 20¼" x 15" • price: $3300

Scottish samplers can include excellent assortments of pictorial motifs as is evident on this praiseworthy example. The samplermaker, who identified herself with her initials at the end of the fifth row from the top, must have enjoyed creating the many depictions – people, peacocks, flowers, trees, birds, rabbits, hearts, stars, and an architectural device known as Solomon’s Porch. The date, 1793, appears near the end of the second row. 

A wonderful aphorism was carefully stitched on the fifth and six rows, “Be kind to all familiar with few and only intimate with one.” This was published in Collection of English Prose and Verse For the Use of Schools, Selected From Different Authors by Alexander Barrie, Teacher of English, Writer’s Court, Edinburgh, 1796. It was likely published prior to that as well.

The large uppercase alphabet and narrow bands below it were carefully executed in the eyelet stitch. 

The sampler was worked in silk on linen and is in excellent condition. It has been conservation mounted and is in a burl wood frame.


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