Linen worked with silk threads; long–and–short, split, stem, back, tent, cross, and satin stitches; 27 7/8 x 10 3/8 in. (70.7 x 26.5 cm)
Inscription: Anna Buckett Iuly 12 Anno Domine 1656
Gift of Irwin Untermyer, 1964 (64.101.1327)
This type of sampler is known as a band sampler, composed of horizontal rows or bands of embroidered patterns worked along the surface of the linen. Most of the patterns themselves were quite old-fashioned by this time; many of them derive from sixteenth-century printed pattern books. This sampler was made during the Commonwealth period when Oliver Cromwell was Lord Protector of England. Anna Buckett, the maker of the sampler, dated it precisely to July 12, 1656—perhaps the day it was completed.
This particular example has the additional feature of a small landscape at the top, where a couple face each other; a loyal dog and Cupid, swooping down from above, encourage their happy union. The presence of the pictorial scene brings the sampler into the realm of decorative objects produced as an end in and of themselves.