Object Record

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Object ID 1960.013.003
Object Name Sampler
Collection Textiles
Credit line Gift of Miss Mary Marshall Johnson
Date 1755
Artist Mary Tatnall
Made Mary Tatnall
Description Framed sampler on linen with a central band of stylized geometric flowers separated by an undulating blue and green line. The piece has a simple border that consists of a red line and a band of stylized floral designs at the top and bottom edges only. The top part consists of a seven-line moral poem embroidered in blue: "That mine eye might closed / be to what becomes me not to / see that deafness might possess / mine ear to what concerns me / not to hear that truth my tongue / might always ty [sic] from ever speaking foolishly." Below the central floral band there are also three other short moral-themed poems: "Were we not born for Heavenly joys and shall / we stoop to earthly toys should we be fond of / gay attire which children love and fools admire." "Beauty is a flower that fadeth away but virtue is / a jewel that will never decay." "When I am dead and buried and all my bones are rotten /When this you see remember me lest I should be forgotten." The sampler is signed: "Mary Tatnall made this sampler in the year 1755." There are also some stitched letter pairs in the bottom half of the sampler.
Dimensions W-10.5 L-16.25 inches
Dimension Details framed dimensions; sampler is 14 1/2" x 8 3/4".
Provenance This sampler was made by Mary Tatnall (1736-1809), the great, great grandmother of the donor. Mary Tatnall was the daughter of Edward and Elizabeth (Pennock) Tatnall of Wilmington, DE. She married William Marshall in Wilmington on August 25, 1757 and had eight children.

Subjects Textiles
Search Terms Samplers
Mary Tatnall
Eighteenth Century
Material Linen; wool embroidery
Place of Origin Wilmington, Delaware