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Purse: T.1-1836

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Object information

Current Location: In storage






Beads (opaque black, yellow, green and brick red; clear blue and gold) threaded on natural silk threads. Lined in leather, bound at top with pale blue satin. Around the top RE / MEMBER / THE / POOR / 1631. Cords for hanging and draw strings, pear-shaped beaded drops, each with two small tassels, three pairs of tassels on bottom edge.


History note: Unknown before Miss Whitehurst

Legal notes

Given by Miss Whitehurst

Measurements and weight

Height: 5 in
Width: 5 in

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Given (1836) by Whitehurst, Miss


Production date: dated AD 1631


Label text from the exhibition ‘Feast and Fast: The Art of Food in Europe, 1500–1800’, on display at The Fitzwilliam Museum from 26 November 2019 until 31 August 2020: This colourful beadwork purse acted as a reminder of the importance of charity and a public expression of piety, clearly expressed by the 2019-12-04-s, ‘REMEMBER THE POORE’. Every time the owner dipped her gloved hand inside to remove a coin, she would see this instruction. England, 1631 Satin, leather lining, silk thread, cord and polychrome glass beads.

School or Style


Inscription or legends present

  • Text: RE / MEMBER / THE / POOR / 1631
  • Location: On exterior at top of beadwork
  • Method of creation: Embroidered
  • Type: Inscription

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: T.1-1836
Primary reference Number: 197524
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Thursday 5 December 2013 Updated: Tuesday 25 April 2023 Last processed: Tuesday 13 June 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Purse" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-04-15 02:30:10

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{{cite web|url= |title=Purse |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-04-15 02:30:10|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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