Saxlingham Nethergate, Norfolk
Susanna's piece may be one of the earliest Norfolk samplers to incorporate both the striated Norfolk style pine tree and the confronting deer into the linked octagons that are one of the hallmarks of this distinctive group. The running stitch used to fill the mound below the deer, within the octagons, can be compared to the stitchwork in the 1752 sampler by Hannah Tramplet, suggesting a similar source or teacher. [Lukacher, p.111]
Susanna's sampler has six decorative bands dividing the alphabets and numbers. The relatively small scale is also characteristic of early Norfolk samplers, and adds to their charm. The verse is by Isaac Watts Reliquiae Juveniles, published in 1734. Specifically it is from the inscription "Dorinda Sewing". As best we can determine, this was one of at least nine inscriptions that Watts wrote to accompany several small French pictures; he could possibly have just translated the original inscriptions rather than have provided new poems. The other pictures included "Claudina, the cook-maid", "Florella singing to her harp", "Angelica singing" and "Iris suckling three Lap-dogs".
Size (W x H): 7 3/4 x 8 3/4 inches
Stitches: Cross, running, cross-over-one, eyelet, satin, hem
Media: Silk on linen
We believe that Susanna was the daughter of Susanna and William Rising, born 7 November 1735 in Saxlingham-Nethergate, Norfolk. The family name is an old one and appears to have originated in Norfolk, where it is recorded in the Domesday Book of 1086. In 1757 Susanna married 21 year-old John Sewell in the nearby village of Ketteringham.
We stand expos'd to every Sin
While idle and without Employ
But Business holds our Passions in
And keep out all unlawfull joy
(This sampler was added to the site on April 01, 2016)