Vis a vis your question about Scottish lace. Well...also in the Blackborne Collection at the MMA is a single piece of something called Hamilton Lace which is explained on pages 430 and 431 of the Dover edition of Palliser. (The piece in our collection might well be classified as torchon if it weren't called Hamilton.) The text reads in part: The early death of the Duke of Hamilton, and the second marriage of the Duchess, did not in any way impede the progress of Hamilton lace, for, as lage as 1778, we read in Locke's Essays on the Scotch Commerce--'The lace manufactory, under the patronage of the amiable Duchess of Hamilton (now Argyle), goes on with success and spirit.' " The text continues: "With respect to the quality of this Hamilton lace, laudable as were the efforts of the Duchess, she succeeded in producing but a very coarse fabric. The specimens which have come under our notice are edgings of the commonest description, of a coarse thread, always of the lozenge pattern (Fig 161); being strong and firm, it was used for nightcaps, never for dressses, and justified the description of a lady who descirbed it as of little account, and spoke of it as "only Hamilton" Continuing: "It appears that the Edinburgh Society died a natural death about 1764, but, not withstanding the untimely demise of this patriotic club, a strong impetus had been given to the lace-makers of Scotland. (Footnote 1769. Pennant in his tour, mentions among the manufactures of Scotland thread laces at Leith, Hamilton and Dalkeith.) Lacemaking was introduced into the schools, and what was better far, many daughters of the smaller gentry and scions of noble Jacobite houses, ruined by the catastrophe of 1745, either added to their incomes or supported themselves wholly by the making of the finer points. This custom seems to have been general, and, in alluding to it, Mrs. Calderwood speaks of the "helplessness" of the English women in comparison to the Scotch." It goes on but I figure most people who are interested have a copy of Palliser. I am going to Scotland this spring, actually making a circuit from Manchester to Manchester, and would be interested to hear anything about Scottish made laces. One thing I can't figure out is why the Art Nouveau and the Craftsman movement which produced Modernista lace in Spain, Aemilia Ars in Italy and the laces of the Weiner Werkstatte and the Industrial schools of the countries of the Austro-Hungarian Empire seem to have passed by the laces of the British Isles so completely. Am I missing something? I am planning to go to the Ruskin Museum when I visit England and Scotland, but apart from that, I don't seem to see much lace stemming from those artistic movements. Yet the PreRaphaelites, like William Morris, seem to be very needlework oriented. Any thoughts? Devon In New Jersey, dreaming of a trip to see things I have never seen.
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