A Bit More

Just a Little More from This Fascinating Collection
 
 
 
 
 
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Biedermeier Writing Table, this birch root wood was designed by Joseph Danhauser, Vienna, Austria circa 1825
 
 
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American furniture makers of the late 19th century capitalised on the easterners’ infatuation with the romance of the western frontier. They produced furniture made of horns from elk, deer and longhorn cattle for use in private libraries, trophy rooms and hunting lodges. Teddy Roosevelt’s horn chair helped fuel the fad. 
 

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Near East Settee, intricate carved wood with mother of pearl inlay. Late 19th century

 

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Floral Basket tapestry. Silk on silk, late 19th century. The colours were still so vibrant.

 

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A Giant Clam. Globe clock and Garniture. Rococo Revival Style, onyx and fire-gilded bronze eight-day movement, silk suspension. French circa 1820

 

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Cimon and Pera. Oil on canvas. Florentine with a Flemish influence. Circa 1660.

 

 

This is a lovely example and as I stood looking at the painting a young couple wandered past. The chap said “why does she look so worried.” That’s what struck me, she would be worried about getting caught. I have put in the label which shows a different account to the one I know. She did indeed get caught.

This is a wonderful story - Roman Charity (or Carità Romana) an exemplary act of a daughter, Pero, (not as spelt here as Pera), who secretly breastfeeds her father, Cimon, after he is incarcerated and sentenced to death by starvation. She is found out by a jailer, but her act of selflessness impresses officials and wins her father's release.

 

The story is recorded in Nine Books of Memorable Acts and Sayings of the Ancient Romans (De Factis Dictisque Memorabilibus Libri IX) by the ancient Roman historian Valerius Maximus, and was presented as a great act of filial piety and Roman honour. A painting in the Temple of Pietas depicted the scene. Among Romans, the theme had mythological echoes in Juno's breastfeeding of the adult Hercules, an Etruscan myth.

In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, many famous European artists depicted the scene. Most outstandingly, Peter Paul Rubens painted several versions. Baroque artist Caravaggio also featured the deed (among others) in his work from 1606, The Seven Works of Mercy. Neoclassical depictions tended to be more subdued.

John Steinbeck's The Grapes of Wrath (1939) gives a 20th century fictional account of Roman Charity - at the end of the novel, Rosasharn nurses a sick and starving man in the corner of a barn..

 

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Lovely to be in the sunshine for a little wander by a fountain

 

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Cannot believe this bloom in February

 

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Another cannon. Just to keep the skipper and his trusty trigger finger limber, had to be done

 

 

 

 

ALL IN ALL QUITE SOMETHING

 

 

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