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Plate VI from Marriage a la Mode
Plate VI from Marriage a la Mode
Not on display
52.2 x 64.4 cm (image)
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Catherine D. Wentworth Collection

A scene of disarray: A woman has collapsed onto a huge easy chair, while a tearful older woman holds a little girl close enough to kiss the collapsed woman. A well-dressed man in handsome wig is removing a ring from the collapsed woman's right index finger (or putting it on?). Behind him stands another man holding a cane, his sword handle protruding from its holster. On the other side of the room are two men. The first is well dressed and well-wigged, with two containers in his coat pocket; one has a paper label hanging from it. The other man is a mess; his coat is partially and incorrectly buttoned, his hair is disheveled and wigless, and his staring eyes and gaping mouth make him seem totally out of control. The first man holds a fist under the other's chin, and he seems to be speaking to him. Perhaps this first man is a physician; on the floor is bottle with a paper label reading "Laudanum", perhaps given to the swooning woman on the chair. Also on the floor is a parchment with designs at the top and the following legible words: "Counselor Silverton's last dying Speech." At the cloth-covered table a chair is overturned, a huge pitcher stands on the floor, and a dog stands on the other chair, his paws resting on the table as his teeth snatch the ear of a pig's head on a tray in the center. Plates and silver are on the table, along with cooked eggs and bread slabs. The view out the open window shows a river busy with boats, as well as a long stone bridge and tall buildings resembling those of a Dutch city; the upper arched section of the window contains a st ained-glass cross design.. On the walls inside the room are hooks for capes and hats, a printed "Almanack" sheet, a corner cupboard for pipes, books etc., and three paintings. These portray a man relieving himself into a corner, a clutter of household objects on the floor, and a man and woman drinking and jesting together. (Virginia K. Anderson 02/06/95)