Palampore Tree of Life Quilt


Not on view

This boldly graphic quilt was constructed in America in the early nineteenth century, using fabrics that originated in India (the center panel and inner swag borders) and England (the outer floral chintz borders). The center panel is a “palampore”—an Indian
hand-painted hanging of a stylized Tree of Life. The “T” outline of the piece, shaped to fit around bedposts, is typical of quilts made in New England. Many New England merchants were involved with direct trade with India and China during the period this quilt was made, and it is likely that owning a quilt featuring a palampore was considered highly fashionable, signaling sophistication and knowledge of far-flung lands.

Palampore Tree of Life Quilt, cotton, American

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