Silk Wedding Purse | Museum of Bags Amsterdam

Silk wedding purse

Silk purse embroidered with gold and silver thread, Italy, ca. 1700
A brides purse
Latin inscription
Aprox 1700

So-called ‘dow-purses’ were traditionally given at weddings as early as the twelfth century, when the groom formally presented the bride with her dowry.

Highly-decorated purses were often used to give gifts of money during this period, and the elaborate nature of the purse formed an integral part of the overall gift. This purse has a romantic Latin inscription embroidered in expensive gold thread. It roughly translates as: “I keep your eloquence safe in my heart/ As an eagle hunts for prey, so will I bring you the prize.” It may well be the promise of a husband to his new bride to always keep her purse filled.


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