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Creating the Image

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Creating the Image

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MORE on Defining the style >

So many tapestries came to be called Sheldon that it became necessary to attempt a definition of the style.  

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©V&A Images/Victoria and Albert Museum, London


Finding the Workshop

The early researchers assumed that because William Sheldon made premises available, the workshop both came into existence, and flourished. No one asked how materials were supplied, how products would be ordered or sold one hundred miles from London, England's consumer capital. No one knew the loan fund was planned, from the start, to be available only for sixteen years, until 1586.


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©V&A Images/Victoria and Albert Museum, London


Finding the weavers

Few weavers could be found working at Barcheston in the forty years of its existence, 1570-1611. Much was made of Peter the Docheman, buried there in 1590/1. He was assumed to be a weaver, even though nothing was known of him. Two men, William Willey and Thomas Weeley appeared in a lawsuit in 1588. John Higgins of Bromsgrove left a bequest to Francis Hyckes in 1604; Ralph Canning, probably born in Beoley in 1567, later worked in London mending the royal tapestries.

Presence of a workforce was assumed because it was thought that products had been 'found'.


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