The Orchard (1890) – Arras Tapestry by William Morris

William Morris is another name from the Victorian Era well worth noticing. He was an artist, a textile designer, a writer and a dedicated medievalist. Thus today I bring you one of his tapestries, from the Open Library book “The Art of William Morris (1887)”

According to Wikipedia “Arras” refers to the French town Arras, a thriving textile town in the 14th and 15th centuries, specializing in wool tapestries. The term “Arras” is still used about tapestry to describe especially rich and detailed work. 

Wings of Whimsy: The Orchard by William Morris - Arras Tapestry - free for personal use #vintage #victorian #textile #design

I have restored the colors to resemble the original. The blue tones were more or less gone, I brought back what I could without adding anything new.

Victoria & Albert Museum in London holds the original tapestry today. Sadly they are presenting all their wonderful art only in small sizes online, so downloading their image will not do you much good. But you may enjoy their description.

I had to google the poem for the correct wording, although I love typography, a couple of the words here were too hard for me to figure out:

The Orchard

Midst bitten mead and acre shorn, 
The world without is waste and worn, 

But here within our orchard-close, 
The guerdon of its labour shows. 

O valiant Earth, O happy year 
That mocks the threat of winter near, 

And hangs aloft from tree to tree 
The banners of the spring to be.

The stunning tapestry is free for your personal use and enjoyment. Click on the book title if you want to read the book, it has numerous other great images as well. Love&Light

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