Pair of gloves, made in England, 1603-1625
Leather and satin, embroidered with silk and metal thread, spangles and seed pearls
Materials & Making :
Seed pearls decorate this very richly embellished glove. Silver and silver-gilt thread and purl (short lengths of metal thread curled tightly together like a minute spring), spangles (an old term for sequins) and coloured silks cover the densely embroidered satin gauntlet. Each motif is heavily padded underneath with additional stitches to give a pronounced three-dimensional effect.
Subjects Depicted :
A snail, a lion and a sheep are embroidered on the gloves. These animals may relate to the heraldry of the owner. They could also be personal devices of the wearer, chosen to represent some individual quality or virtue. Many of the motifs that appear in Jacobean embroidery were copied from emblem books. This was a popular form of literature, which linked visual images with moral virtues.
courtesy V&A Museum