Thursday, May 31, 2012

Heraldry in the ... Well?

I ran across the story of this heraldic quilt over at the quilting blog 24 Blocks (http://www.24blocks.com/2012/05/you-never-know-what-you-might-find-at-the-bottom-of-a-well-.html), who had gotten it from the Hart Cottage Quilts website (http://hartcottagequilts.com/), who apparently had gotten it from the Budapest History Museum (the link they have to the Museum does not work; I tried it several time from different computers and got the same Not Found error every time.  The Museum's main page in English is at http://www.museum.hu/museum/index_en.php?ID=14.  Nothing I tried searching for got me to the object).  They were all excited about this:

The story from Hart Cottage Quilts says:

Quilt historian Lisa Evans, whose specialty is medieval and pre-Colonial quilting, points out this remarkable patchwork textile which was found covered with mud at the bottom of a castle well in Budapest, Hungary.

The silk textile is worked in both patchwork and applique, and features on-point blocks about a foot square, alternating setting squares pieced of red and white with appliqued blocks with the (Hungarian) Arpád and (Neapolitan) Angevin heraldic devices (referring to King Charles Robert, whose father was king of Naples and Duke of Anjou, France).
The Budapest Museum notes that a similar textile covers the back of King Charles Robert's throne.

The Angevin blocks on this quilt may be familiar to you from the chief of Anjou found on many Italian coats of arms.

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