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Locket

  • Place of origin:

    England, Britain (made)

  • Date:

    second half 17th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    unknown (production)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Copper gilt, with engraved decoration and painted miniature

  • Museum number:

    898-1904

  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, room 54b, case 14

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Object Type
The copper-gilt locket is made in two parts, hinged at the top. The front of the case is engraved with the arms and motto that were granted to Major William Careless. The back is engraved with a scene showing Careless and Charles II hiding in the oak tree. Inside the locket are a portrait of Careless and an inscription.

Historical Associations
After the Royalist defeat at the Battle of Worcester in 1651, the young Charles II and Colonel Careless sheltered at the home of the Penderell family at Boscobel House, Shropshire. It was suggested that they might hide from the searching Cromwellian soldiers by climbing up into 'a great oak', taking with them 'some victuals for the whole day viz. bread, cheese, small beer, and nothing else'. Thus they escaped, to become the subject of legend.

Inscription
'Renowned Carlos! thow has won the day
(Loyalty Lost) by helping Charles away,
From Kings-Blood-Thirsty-Rebels in a Night,
made black with Rage, of theives, & Hells dispight
Live! King-Loved Sowle thy fame be Euer Spoke
By all whilst England Beares a Royall Oake'

Heraldry
Careless's arms celebrate his service to his king. The shield bears an oak tree with three royal crowns on a fess (a horizontal band). The crest has a sword and sceptre in saltire (in the shape of a St Andrew's cross), with a civic crown (a wreath). The motto is Subditus fidelis Regis & Regni salus ('A subject faithful to his king is the safety of the kingdom').

Physical description

Oval locket with a hinged cover and a loop at the top. The locket is engraved and contains a portrait miniature.

Place of Origin

England, Britain (made)

Date

second half 17th century (made)

Artist/maker

unknown (production)

Materials and Techniques

Copper gilt, with engraved decoration and painted miniature

Marks and inscriptions

'Renewned Carlos! Thow hast won the day (Loyalty Lost) by helping Charles away, From Kings-Blood-Thirsty-Rebels in a Night, made black with Rage, of theives, & Hells dispight Live! King-Loved Sowle thy fame by Euer Spoke By all whilst England Beares a Royalle Oake.'
'Subditus. Fidelis. Regis. &. Regni. salus' A subject faithful to his king is the safety of the kingdom

Dimensions

Height: 6.2 cm, Width: 4.7 cm, Depth: 0.5 cm

Object history note

Made in England

Descriptive line

BOSCOBEL OAK LOCKET

Labels and date

British Galleries:
This locket contains a miniature of Major William Careless (or Carlos), who escaped from the Battle of Worcester with Charles II in 1651. Careless hid with Charles in an oak tree near Boscobel House, Shropshire, a scene engraved on the back of the locket. The poem engraved within the locket also celebrates Careless's loyalty to the King. [27/03/2003]

Subjects depicted

Charles II (King of England); Carlos, William (Major)

Categories

Portraits; Royalty; Jewellery

Collection code

MET

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Qr_O72970
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