Object name


Date made


Place made


Late 18th-century silk bag, formerly in the collection of Queen Mary, embroidered on both sides with silk and metal threads, metal foils, and spangles.

Content description

Late 18th-century cream silk bag embroidered with metal and silk threads, metal foils, and spangles on both sides. At the top is a drawstring with silk tassels made of the same cream silk used for the bag itself. Both sides feature a flower motif in each corner and a central circular cartouche with a bow on top. The bows are made of metal foils couched down with silk threads and outlined with passing threads. The stems and leaves are worked in stem and satin stitches made of silk thread, while the outlines of the flowers and buds are worked in passing threads that have been couched down. The flowers themselves are worked in a variety of blue and pink spangles and metal foils.

On one side, the central circle features a capital letter 'L'. Like many of the other elements on this bag, the letter is worked in metal foil couched down and outlined with passing thread. The cartouche consists of a double outline of metal plate that has been couched down, with an interior of blue and silver spangles and three pink metal foil crosses. The cartouche on the other side features a phrase in French, reading, 'Tribut de Respect et de Tendrese', translating to 'tribute to respect and tenderness'. The phrase appears in late 18th-century French evangelical texts and is likely a note of advice or well wishes to the owner of the bag. The inscription is worked in passing threads that have been couched down. The cartouche is made of a double outline of silver spangles and features on its interior a series of flowers made of blue spangles blossoming from wavy stems made of couched passing threads.

This piece was donated by Mary of Teck, Queen of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions, and Empress of India, from her personal collection. Queen Mary donated a variety of textiles, including her own embroidery, to the Royal School of Needlework.


width: 31cm
length: 30.5cm





Credit line

Gift of Her Majesty Queen Mary.

Catalogue number


Other numbers

RSN 11
© Royal School of Needlework