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1,722 media by topicpage 1 of 18

Oval container

Caucasus region


His eyes wide open, Jesus appears alive on this Cross, a symbol of the belief that he conquered death. Too large to be a processional cross, this crucifix may have been mounted on a beam or screen of a small ch... more


The slender and elongated stock, or tiller, and the long release lever indicate that this crossbow dates from around the middle of the fifteenth century. It belongs to a group of weapons distinguished by inlaid... more

Crossbow of Count Ulrich V of Württemberg (1413–1480)

Dated 1460 in the carved staghorn decoration, this is the earliest known dated crossbow in existence. The staghorn is inscribed with the coats of arms of Württemberg and Savoy, referring to the owner, Count Ulr... more

Crossbow of Matthias Corvinus, King of Hungary (reigned 1458–1490)

This crossbow is one of the earliest surviving dated examples to include heraldry in its decoration. It was made for Matthias Corvinus (1443–1490), king of Hungary and Bohemia, whose personal coat of arms and t... more

Cabinet (Fassadenschrank)

During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in Central Europe, the term “woodworker” did not define a single trade. Instead, there were cabinetmakers and chairmakers, each represented by their own guild. The... more


The painted ornament on the upper front of this chest, with its crowned Tudor rose, Scottish thistle, and French fleur-de-lis, is typical of designs on furniture produced in the Guilford-Saybrook area of coasta... more

Chest with drawer

This small chest belongs to a group of painted furniture associated with the Guilford-Saybrook area of coastal Connecticut. The founder of this tradition may have been Charles Guillam (1671–1727), who had emigr... more

Dressing table

Period inventories refer to this type of table as a “chamber,” “dressing,” or “toilet” table, indicating its use in a bedroom for grooming. The drawers with drop pulls held brushes, combs, pomade pots, and scen... more

Slate Table

This table is distinguished for combining an imported Swiss top with an American- made base. The octagonal top’s slate center is framed by a marquetry border with heraldic motifs in a style characteristic of wo... more

Leather armchair

Armchairs with serpentine backs, boldly carved hand terminals, and turned front posts were made in both Boston and Philadelphia during the second quarter of the eighteenth century. This armchair has a history o... more

High chest of drawers

Japanning, the use of paint and gilded gesso to imitate the glossy finish on Asian lacquerwork, was a popular method of furniture decoration in colonial Boston. This group of japanned furniture (40.37.1,.2,.4) ... more

Dressing table

Japanning, the use of paint and gilded gesso to imitate the glossy finish on Asian lacquerwork, was a popular method of furniture decoration in colonial Boston. This group of japanned furniture (40.37.1,.2,.4) ... more

Slab Table

Made in New York, United States

Drop-leaf Dining Table

Possibly made in Newport, Rhode Island, United States

Hardanger Fiddle

Though the hardingfele was known as early as about 1650, Botnen maker of this instrument was responsible for the tradition that continues today. Isak Nielsen (Skaar) Botnen (Norwegian, 1669–1759) Western Norway... more


This is one of only two fully upholstered cabriole-leg Massachusetts settees that are known today. It belongs to a small group of Boston furniture characterized by asymmetrically arranged C-scrolls and knee car... more

Card table

This turret-top card table, so called for its projecting rounded corners, descended in the Verplanck family along with four side chairs (39.184.3-.6), a tea table (39.184.11), and an upholstered settee (39.184.... more

Bentside spinet

Spinets were so rarely made in colonial America that in 1769, when this example was finished, the Boston Gazette reported: "A few days since was shipped for Newport, a very curious Spinnet, being the first ever... more

Mary Birch

This portrait of the artist's mother was made before William Russell Birch arrived in America. William Russell Birch (American (born England), Warwick 1755–1834 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)

Side Chair

This vase-back chair originally was made for the wealthy Salem merchant Elias Hasket Derby. The chair is part of a larger set, two pieces of which are at Bayou Bend (Museum of Fine Arts, Houston), and one in th... more

Side Chair

Attributed to Samuel McIntire (1757–1811) Made in Salem, Massachusetts, United States

Side Chair

Attributed to Thomas Howard Jr. (active ca. 1790–1833) Made in Providence, Rhode Island, United States

Dressing Stand

Made in New England, United States


The shape of this sofa derives from plate 35 in Thomas Sheraton’s "Cabinet-Maker and Upholsterer’s Drawing-Book" (1793). The carving on the crest rail is attributed to McIntire on the basis of its similarity to... more

Card table

This card table was acquired in 1971 to match a superb Baltimore example (32.55.4) already in the collection for display in the Baltimore Dining Room (gallery 724) in the American Wing. Made in Baltimore, Maryl... more


This square-back armchair is one of a set of twelve chairs made for the parlor of the Peirce-Nichols house on Federal Street in Salem, Massachusetts. In 1801, the architect Samuel McIntire was commissioned by J... more

Side Chair

Attributed to Thomas Seymour (1771–1848) Made in Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Sideboard Table

The form of this sideboard does not follow any published designs exactly, but the general shape has many English precedents. A variety of techniques were employed for decorative impact. Of them, the most striki... more

Tambour Desk

Reuben Swift (1780–1843) Made in New Bedford, Massachusetts, United States

Stool (tabouret)

After a design by Friedrich Gilly (German, Szczecin, Poland 1772–1800 Carlsbad, Czech Republic)

Schuylkill Bridge High Street Philadelphia / [drawn by W. Birch ; engraved by S. Seymour].

Print shows a view of the Schuylkill Bridge at High Street, Philadelphia, with exposed frame structure prior to being enclosed; insert at bottom center shows a view of the bridge as covered. On the left, a man ... more

The capitol at Washington / designed and published by W. Birch, enamel painter, Springland near Bristol, Pennsylv'a.

Print of title page for "The country seats of the United States of North America, with some scenes connected with them" showing an eagle holding a stars and stripes shield above the construction of the two wing... more

Dressing glass

Dressing tables often featured a built-in mirror, either mounted to the back of the piece or incorporated into a drawer. When no mirror was included, a dressing glass such as this one would be placed on top of ... more

Capture of H.B.M. Frigate Macedonian, Capt. J.S. Carden by the U.S. frigate United States, Stephen Decatur, Esqr., Commander / painted by T. Birch, A.C.S.A. & P.A. ; engraved by B. Tanner, A.C.S.A.

Print shows British frigate Macedonian, her masts and sails destroyed, being fired upon by the U.S. frigate United States during the War of 1812.

South-east view of Sackett's harbour / T. Birch del.

Print shows a small lighthouse, sailing ships, and buildings, also Navy Point, Fort Tompkins, the Smith Cantonment, and the Pike Cantonment, Sackets Harbor, New York.

Side Chair

Made in Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Rocking Chair

Previously reserved for the elderly and infirm, rocking chairs became ubiquitous in America after the Revolution. The Shakers produced slat-back rocking chairs both for their own use and for sale to the outside... more

Dining Table

Made in United States


Made in New Lebanon, New York, United States

First plate of four subjects, for Birch's Philadelphia

Print showing four vignette views on one sheet; upper left, "Franklin Library in 1800", bottom left, "Swedes Church Southwark", upper right, "Pennsylvania Hospital in 1800", and bottom right, "High St. Market H... more

Capture of the Guerriere by the Constitution / T. Birch A.C.S.A. ; D. Kimberly sc.

Print shows the Constitution, in the background, firing on the wreckage of the HMS Guerriere, the last remaining mast is falling, in the aftermath of the battle between the two ships.

Back of the State House, Philadelphia / designed & published by W. Birch enamel painter, 1800.

Print showing rear view of Independence Hall and the area behind with pedestrians and group of four Native Americans walking and sitting on the lawn.

Revolving Chair

Revolving chairs, also known as stools or swivel chairs, were produced by Shakers in many styles and sizes. The earliest examples stood on long legs and often were used in the brethren's shops. Low revolving ch... more

An unfinished house, in Chesnut Street Philadelphia. Built for the late Robert Morris Esqr. / designed & published by W. Birch enamel painter, 1800 ; republished by Desilver 1841.

Print shows a street view of a large house under construction beyond two trees in the foreground; also shows pedestrians and, arriving on the left, a workman carrying a ladder.

High Street, with the First Presbyterian church Philadelphia. Taken down in 1820 / designed & published by W. Birch enamel painter, 1800.

Print shows a street view with the High Street marketplace on the left and the First Presbyterian Church on the right, with pedestrians on the sidewalk and service carts on the cobblestone street.

George Washington and the spy Harvey Birch / designed by T.H. Matteson ; engraved by Charles Burt, N.Y.

Washington (seated at far left with book) and Birch (holding cloth draped over arms) with members of the Wharton family seated or standing around a table, in a scene from The Spy by James Fennimore Cooper.

Birch Tree, Niagara

This drawing was executed when Kensett was refining his skill in woodland and bucolic subjects; it probably manifests his steady purpose to understand the character and variety of trees, so that in composing a ... more