Lot 57: A rare appliquéd patchwork coverlet depicting the
December 8, 2009
London, United KingdomLive Auction
Description: A rare appliquéd patchwork coverlet depicting the coronation of Queen Victoria, English, worked by H.C. Simmonds, circa 1838, cotton flap attached to one side crudely embroidered in red cotton `H.C. Simmonds, near the Mansion House at Weston near Bath, Somerset Shr' the central section with a stylised church and Christ as a boy visiting the temple, the bordering scenes of the Flight into Egypt and the Nativity, often incorporating rather hairy angels, the upper edge with Coronation scene with large throne, three dimensional bishop, and courtiers and raisedwork royal cypher, the lower border with a large thatched cottage, bird in a cage, one of the figures with 1790s block printed cotton gown, the two side panels with scenes from country life including a church, Cross Keys public house, harvest scenes, animals, fine carriages, the outer border of ivy trails in green roller printed cotton, size 237 by 203cm, 93 by 78in Stylistically the fine robes of the Coronation figures are more 1780s in style than 1830s which suggests that the embroideress was a little out of touch with contemporary fashions and probably didn't see engravings of Queen's Victoria's actual coronation. The cottons are mainly roller-printed dress fabrics of the 1830s. Weston is a small village near Bath. The 'Mansion House' may refer to Weston House, which stood in the High Street until demolished in the 1970s. It was built around 1700 and would have been the largest house in the village even in the mid 19th century. The Weston burial church registrar contains several children named Simmonds/Simmons in the 1830s but no earlier records of the name which suggests that the familly may only have been resident in Weston for a few years. We are indebted to Colin Johnstone of the Bath Record Office and Rosemary Harden of the Fashion Museum, Bath for their help in researching the provenance of this piece.
Condition Report: The white cotton ground has discoloured to beige, generally good condition apart from the brown thatched cotton cottage where the brown dye has caused rot and has been rebacked in brown cotton below.