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A work made of oak with white pine.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of oak with white pine.


c. 1710


Artist unknown (American, 18th century)
Hampshire, Massachusetts

About this artwork

Intended to store valuable linens, plates, and other goods, this probably served as a dower chest that a young woman brings to her new home upon her marriage. The front of the chest features an elaborate tulip, vine, and heart design intended to reinforce the theme of love. The tulip motif appeared frequently on English textiles, ceramics, and furniture, and it was brought to the American colonies through the immigration of English craftsmen. The tulip, which originated in ancient Persia, symbolized perfect love, and Turkish ceramics incorporating tulips were present in England by the early 17th century. Traces of the original green and red paint on the surface reveal that the chest was initially brightly decorated, which would have emphasized the festive patterning of the tulip theme.


On View, Gallery 165


Arts of the Americas


Artist unknown




Hatfield (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

c. 1710


Oak with white pine


82.5 × 122.5 × 48.2 cm (33 1/2 × 48 1/4 × 19 in.)

Credit Line

Robert R. McCormick Charitable Trust Fund

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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