Chest

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

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  • A work made of oak with white pine.

Date:

c. 1710

Artist:

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

American Art, Gallery 165

Artist

Artist unknown

Title

Chest

Origin

Hatfield

Date

1710

Medium

Oak with white pine

Dimensions

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

1979.1459

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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