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Woven silk

Woven silk

  • Place of origin:

    Lucca (made)

  • Date:

    1300-50 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    woven silk

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Silks with this kind of pattern could be made in different qualities. The statutes of silk weaving guilds laid down the composition and structure of fabrics, and they could vary according to where they were made. The materials, technique and pattern sometimes determined the name of the fabric. This modest silk conforms to a type called camacas in the statutes for the city of Lucca in 1376. Some were made of silk alone, others had small details brocaded in metal thread.

It is possible that yet others were made with much more gold thread, just like those depicted in paintings by the Italian artist Bernardo Daddi (active 1312; d. 1348) in works such as the Anunciation from the Virgin and Child Enthroned with Six Saints in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. Daddi was careful in selecting the most appropriate textiles for different roles in his religious paintings: these textiles were chosen only for cloths of honour, wall hangings, or drapery for the Virgin's throne while he represented the earthly donors in much less showy textiles.

Physical description

Fragment of lampas silk woven with scrolling vines, squirrels and deer, tabby/tabby weave; mounted on card, with watercolour reconstruction by Rosa Wallis, 1892.

Place of Origin

Lucca (made)


1300-50 (made)



Materials and Techniques

woven silk


Width: 31.8 cm, Length: 15.2 cm

Object history note

Acquired from the Bock collection in 1863; thought at that time to be Sicilian.

Descriptive line

1300-50, Italian; Lampas, tabby ground, tabby pattern, mounted with reconstructed watercolour (805-1892); pattern of squirrels, deer, vine leaves.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Monnas, Lisa, Merchants, Princes and Painters. Silk Fabrics in Italian and Northern Paintings 1300-1550, New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 2008, pp. 82-3





Subjects depicted

Squirrels; Deer; Vines




Textiles and Fashion Collection

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