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Rocking cradle on stand, Italy, 1600-1750

Flowers, foliage and angels are richly illustrated on this rocking cradle. It was presumably made for a wealthy or important infant, or used by generations of an affluent family. The crib is made from woven fabric covered in plaster and is suspended from a wooden frame. It dates from the 1600s and is thought to be of Italian origin. A motif, possibly the head of Christ, is on each side of the cradle while a human face is painted on each end of the stand near the foot. The whole cradle is richly embellished with gold. It is unknown who made the cradle and for whom. Whereas most infants were placed, at best, in a simple wooden crib, this child was lucky enough or wealthy enough to have a custom-made deluxe model.

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Glossary: cradle

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