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Panel
  • Panel
    Mary, Queen of Scots, born 1542 - died 1587
  • Enlarge image

Panel

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1570-1585 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Mary, Queen of Scots, born 1542 - died 1587 (maker)
    Talbot, Elizabeth Countess of Shrewsbury, born 1527 - died 1608 (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Embroidered linen canvas with silk and silver-gilt threads

  • Credit Line:

    Presented by Art Fund

  • Museum number:

    T.33D-1955

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This panel bears the monograms of Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth (Bess) Talbot, Countess of Shrewsbury. It is part of a collection of needlework known as the Oxburgh hangings. They were made between 1570 and about 1585, the work of Mary during her imprisonment in England and Bess, whose husband George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury was responsible for Mary while she stayed at one or other of the Shrewsbury estates. The partial inscription, RY CA.VEN, is probably a short form for Henry Cavendish, who was Bess's second husband.

This work panel of canvas work (stitching over the threads of a coarsely woven linen) is embroidered in coloured silks, silver and silver-gilt thread, mounted on green velvet. Not all the panels were embroidered by Mary and Bess, as household accounts show that both had professional embroiderers on staff. The existing ‘hangings’ consist of a of wall hanging, two bed curtains and valance, on permanent long-term loan at Oxburgh Hall in Norfolk. However these were probably not the original arrangement of the embroidery, but sewn together in the late 17th century. This group of 33 embroideries are the remains of another hanging, now unpicked.

Physical description

Octagonal panel of embroidered linen canvas with silk and silver-gilt threads. Cut in half vertically with monogram and inscription, worked in pink, yellow, blue silks and with a raised border embroidered in silver-gilt thread.

Place of Origin

England (made)

Date

1570-1585 (made)

Artist/maker

Mary, Queen of Scots, born 1542 - died 1587 (maker)
Talbot, Elizabeth Countess of Shrewsbury, born 1527 - died 1608 (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Embroidered linen canvas with silk and silver-gilt threads

Marks and inscriptions

M R E S phi [not clear]
Partial monogram in centre of panel

RY. CA. VEN
Partial inscription around the border of the panel

Dimensions

Height: 41.2 cm, Width: 23.7 cm

Descriptive line

Octagonal panel of embroidered linen canvas with silk and silver-gilt threads, possibly made by Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth Talbot, Oxburgh, England, 1570-1785

Materials

Linen (material); Silk thread; Silver-gilt thread

Techniques

Hand-embroidery

Categories

Textiles; Embroidery; Royalty; Scotland

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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