Mark Goodger

Penwork Sewing Box

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Penwork Sewing box with various penwork pictures on each surface with the top one showing Nemean (Leo the Lion) born to the titan Typhon and who was slayed by Heracles, surrounded with cherubs. In greek mythology Lions are symbolic of... Read More


SKU: 5f8a3bdc3498 Categories: ,
Dimensions 22 × 15.5 cm
Year

c. 1815

Medium

Wood

Country

United Kingdom

Description

Description

Penwork Sewing box with various penwork pictures on each surface with the top one showing Nemean (Leo the Lion) born to the titan Typhon and who was slayed by Heracles, surrounded with cherubs. In greek mythology Lions are symbolic of courage and hope, the cherubs representing love.

The Interior is lined with pink paper with the lid being lined with red silk. The sides of the box have Lions head ring handles and the box sits on four pressed ball feet with floral decoration.

The Nemean Lion is a monstrous lion, born to the titan Typhon and mother of monsters; Echidna. It lived around Nemea and terrorised the nearby villages, often killing the cattle and sheep. It lived inside a cave with two entrances.

In Ancient Greece Lions symbolised power and wealth and were featured prominently in many ancient Greek myths. The Nemean lion was famously slayed by Heracles, which was the first labor that Heracles had to perform. It was said that the lions fur was impervious to attacks because it was made of gold and its claws were sharper than mortal swords and could cut through armour. Heracles managed to kill the Nemean lion by strangling it and afterwards wore the lions skin.

This Penwork sewing box comes with a fully working lock and a tasselled key.

Penwork, or Pen and Ink, was used on boxes to illustrate beautiful scenes and sometimes to record a visit to a foreign country or vacation. They can feature people, landscapes, birds, insects, plants, flowers, animals and some have prints of greek mythology or of spa towns. These were all drawn very exact and beautifully finished with a shellac varnish. Some penwork would of been commissioned to professional artists, but the majority favoured pass-time of ladies (the ladies were often skilled in the technique as the professionals!) It’s because of this that we see many different examples of Penwork.

More information on Sewing Boxes can be found on our historypage.

Additional information

Additional information

Dimensions 22 × 15.5 cm
Year

c. 1815

Medium

Wood

Country

United Kingdom