Embroidered in a variety of blue, green, pink and gold stitches, the panel shows a noblewoman bathing in a parkland pool attended by two gentlewomen, a rabbit, a deer, a peacock and various comical butterflies with other oversized winged insects. A standing figure of cupid can be glimpsed behind a female attendant while the crowned figure of a king observes the scene from his turreted eyrie. Measuring 16in wide by 111/2in high (42 x 29cm) the panel had been placed on a later stretcher and its border folded under to fit a 19th century maple frame but otherwise it was in relatively good, unfaded condition with hardly any loss to the stitches and sold to a dealer at £4200.
Humour in stitches
UK: COLOURFUL and humorous, this late 17th century needlework panel, left, was the top textile at Neale’s (15 per cent buyer’s premium) sale in Nottingham on March 25-26.