Embroidered sampler depicting the Foundling Hospital in 1763 by Sarah Anne Quartermain

This is the first depiction by a child of the Foundling Hospital to enter the museum's collection.


Embroidered fabric
50.8 x 50.8 cm
Art Fund grant:
£5,500 ( Total: £10,350)
Acquired in:

The artist was 10 year-old Sarah Ann Quartermain who was probably a foundling. Needlework was a major part of the girls' education at the Hospital and samplers are a unique personal example of a young girl's needlework accomplishments. Her image has been adapted from a print of 1763, separating and flattening out each of the building's various elements -chapel, boys' and girls' wings, the forecourt, the side colonades, the front gate - all peopled with naively scaled carriages, visitors and foundling children as well as bystanders and a couple strolling a dog.


Bought by the consignor at a small, local auction. The work has been vetted by the Art Loss Register.

Venue details

The Foundling Museum 40 Brunswick Square, LONDON London WC1N 1AZ 020 7841 3600 foundlingmuseum.org.uk/

Entry details

Free with National Art Pass (standard entry £7.50)

Tue – Sat, 10am – 5pm
Sun, 11am – 5pm