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Sampler (Netherlands)

This is a Sampler. It was embroidered by Griet Ruwen. It is dated 1810 and we acquired it in 1981. Its medium is silk embroidery on cotton foundation and its technique is embroidered in cross and eyelet stitches on plain weave foundation. It is a part of the Textiles department.

Griet Ruwen’s sampler shows how deeply ingrained faith and religion were in daily Dutch culture in the early 19th century. Even as she practiced her needlework, Griet expressed piety and religious devotion through symbolism.
Below the crowns and initials are two angels holding a wreath of roses, which represents eternity. The wreath encircles a dove, a symbol of mercy and peace. In the center, a line of three animals is repeated symmetrically on each side: a hart, representing gentleness and pride; a dove, a symbol of mercy and peace; and a dog, symbolizing fidelity and watchfulness. Close to the borders on each side are the Spies of Canaan, represented by two men with a cluster of grapes between them. The grapes represent Christ on the cross. The ladders are among the Instruments of Christ’s Passion. At each lower corner is a bird known as the Pious Pelican, who shown feeding three younger birds, a symbol relating to Christ’s sacrifice.

This object was bequest of Gertrude M. Oppenheimer. It is credited Bequest of Gertrude M. Oppenheimer.

Its dimensions are

H x W: 47 x 51.4 cm (18 1/2 x 20 1/4 in.)

It is inscribed

Griet Ruwen 1810

Cite this object as

Sampler (Netherlands); Embroidered by Griet Ruwen; silk embroidery on cotton foundation; H x W: 47 x 51.4 cm (18 1/2 x 20 1/4 in.); Bequest of Gertrude M. Oppenheimer; 1981-28-214

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Sampler (Netherlands) |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=31 March 2023 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>