A woman's gown of two patterns of maroon silk. The gown is made of one brocaded with discrete floral sprays in green, blue, reds and white, with one central mirror-image motif. The front panels of the skirts in front have larger floral sprays in white and shades of pink, in a serpentine line. The gown is in the English (tight-back) style, open at the front with robings to the waist and elbow-length sleeves with ruched cuffs. The bodice and sleeves are lined with linen, with worked eyelets at the front edges. The pleats at the back are stitched down. A waistseam runs from the front openings to either side of the centre back pleats. The gown is made of 6 widths of first silk and 2 partial widths of the second silk on either side of the front opening. The skirts are flat pleated into the waist seam, with pocket openings in each side seam. The hem is faced with maroon silk ribbon.

The gown was probably originally made of the first silk as a gown and remade, possibly for a taller, slenderer wearer, in the 1770s. The bodice was taken in, sleeves re-set and the skirts were possbily repleated for a narrower hoop. The front panels, made from silk of another gown, were added.

The hooks on the right front edge of the lining are a later addition.


  • Title: Gown
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 1740/1749
  • Location: Spitalfields
  • Physical Dimensions: Length: 152.0 cm shoulder to hem at centre back approx, Width: 12.5 in waist, Circumference: 71.0 cm bust under armholes approx, Width: 41.5 cm silk of gown, selvedge to selvedge
  • Provenance: Given by Miss Elizabeth Sumpter
  • Medium: silk, linen, silk thread, linen thread; hand-woven brocade, hand-sewn

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