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Shakespeare Connected - Marking Time in Shakespeare’s England


The hearth was the heart of the home, providing the essentials of warmth, light and food. It also had great symbolic significance, and was a key place for reflection and contemplation, as well as display. Major moments in the life of a family were commemorated, and most importantly, shown off, through the decoration of the hearth and the objects that adorned it, like this fireback dated 1585, and fire dogs dated ten years later. Whilst we no longer know what events these items celebrated, as more dated objects were accumulated over time and displayed around the hearth, they would have acted as a timeline of the family’s greatest achievements.

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