Elizabeth Thomson

English Samplers

Elizabeth Thomson

1760

Devonshire

Description:

Small samplers often pack a lot in a very small space and this one is no exception. Elizabeth starts with two alphabets in all capital letters, an ornate curlique one followed by one in all eyelet stitch. Note her fine Queen's stitch strawberries. Beneath the alphabet bands she has two sections of verse, which we have found in a schoolbook of the period, A Guide to the English Tongue, by Thomas Dyche, schoolmaster at Stratford Bow, first published in 1709. Elizabeth has proudly stitched her signature, followed by a "procession of crowns" depicting the ranks of royalty. Each line has been separated with a variety of band patterns.

We have struggled with this sampler for years, presuming it was Scottish because of the embellished alphabet and familial initials (GN, RT, MT, IT, ET). These features contrasted with the "procession of crowns", which is exclusively an English motif. After hours of unsuccessful genealogical research, we broadened our horizons and located the birth date we have detailed below. 

Size (W x H): 4 1/4 x 12 1/4 inches

Stitches: Cross, double running, eyelet, rice, Queen's, fly, cross-over-one

Media: Silk on linen

Genealogy:

We believe the maker of this sampler is the Elizabeth Thompson who was born 3 November 1760 and baptised at Batter Street Presbyterian in Plymouth, Devonshire, England. This particular "Non-Conformist" church did not register full parental names, preferring to list the births under the paternal simplification of "Mr. Thompson".

Verse:

If you deSIRe to WORshIP god
aRight. fIRst In the MORNINg
PRaY and last at NIght
CRaVe for his BLeSSINg on YouR
LabouRs aLL. ANd IN DIStRess
foR hIs aSSIStance caLL

PRaY thou to God that he may be
INCLIN'D To gRaNt thee HeaLth
of Body and of MINd

Elizabeth Thomson

NOVEMBER the 3
1760

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(This sampler was added to the site on February 15, 2013)

Additional Information

Same verse on many samplers, including one stitched by Sarah Woods dated 1776 currently part of the FitzWilliam Museum collection.

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