Orphrey Band: The Tree of Jesse

c. 1350

The Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art
Cleveland, United States

From the 1100s to the 1300s in London, both men and women worked as professional embroiderers. Here, the Tree of Jesse, a favorite medieval theme illustrating the ancestry of Christ, appears as a grapevine with three ancestors—Achim, Ezechias, and Eliud—seated on tendrils. Painters often provided embroiderers with designs, revealing a close relationship between the professions.

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  • Title: Orphrey Band: The Tree of Jesse
  • Date Created: c. 1350
  • Physical Dimensions: Overall: 85.7 x 18.1 cm (33 3/4 x 7 1/8 in.); Mounted: 109.2 x 28.6 cm (43 x 11 1/4 in.)
  • Provenance: formerly in the collection of Marquis de Cubas, Madrid; Joseph Brummer collection, New York; A. Bradley Martin, New York.
  • Type: Embroidery
  • Rights: CC0
  • External Link: https://clevelandart.org/art/1949.503
  • Medium: Silk, gold and silver thread, linen; embroidery: split and couching stitches
  • Inscriptions: three figures framed by a scrolling vine dressed in medieval costumes hold scrolls on which their names are written in Latin; they read from top to bottom: Achim, Ezechias-Rex, and Eloud.
  • Department: Textiles
  • Culture: England, 14th century
  • Credit Line: Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund
  • Collection: T - Ecclesiastical
  • Accession Number: 1949.503

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