Thursday, 12 September 2013


Been a busy day. Motored over to Sudbury this morning to pick up my new linen jacket. Found it a very good fit generally but (as my tailor, Matthew, pointed out) just a bit long in the sleeves. We both agreed with him and commissioned the necessary alteration. He will let me know when it's ready. Paid him anyway, then motored on to Bury Saint Edmund's where we met with Ann's middle brother David and his Wife, Jo. Been a while since we'd met Jo. Jo looks after her mother, who lives in a 'granny flat' attached to their home. Gladys, her mother is now over ninety and Jo has been unable to attend many of the  family gets together lately, so we spent a lot of time over lunch picking up the threads. After lunch the two ladies went off to comb the charity shops in Bury (they both love doing this), whilst David and I went off to the blokes' shops. I needed to buy a shirt or so, and possibly a tie (David has excellent taste in ties, so felt glad of his advice and support) . Shirts no problem, but no acceptable ties forthcoming. Offered a good many ties, wearing which, I'd have preferred not to be seen dead in a ditch . Hid my distaste at these ghastly  items (not wanting to hurt the vendors' feelings).   Oh well, not a desperate necessity, and anyway, I think I'm beginning to sound a bit like Bertie Wooster; and this would be misleading, as I think I've very little in common with the gentleman.


We now come to this weeks  MYSTERY ITEM illustrated above.  I purchased it last week at Long Melford. It is made of oak. It is eleven and a half inches high overall. The lid is at the front and slides upward and is then removed  to get at the box's contents. Inside the box is divided into two compartments; the lower one is two and a half inches high, and the upper one is four and a half inches high. The box is made to serve a quite specific purpose. Please would you guess when it was made, its purpose, and where it was made. Please be specific about this. Anyone who gets its country of origin right will acquire much kudos about this.

Being called up to supper, so must now cease waffling, and nip up stairs for sustenance.

P.s. Well worth the nip! An has made some delicious tea bread, and this was served toasted with  scrambled egg. This, in turn, had a little grated cheddar on top, slapped under the grill to toast and brown the cheese. Absolutely DELICIOUS.    The way to an old man's heart is definitely via his tummy.


Rog said...

You do come up with some posers Mike!

Pure guess would be some sort of key or letter box enclosure and it looks a bit Scandinavian - possibly Danish?

Mike and Ann said...

Sorry Rog; nowhere near. You haven't given your idea of date?

Maggie said...

Is it for storing tapers and matches in church? Pure guess at Norfolk/Suffolk and I have no idea about the date but guess at 16C?

kippy said...

1820, Welsh. To hold candles and matches perhaps?

Rog said...

I wasn't taking the heart into consideration
. Is it a his 'n hers ammunition store?
American , 1890

Crowbard said...

Welsh Marches, mid C.18th, sugar and salt safe, Mike?
Must admit when I first glanced at it yesterday I supposed it to be a Welsh candle & vesta safe of early C.19th but since that option is already taken I thought I'd try an outright guess.
Ink and quill storage also comes to mind.....

Crowbard said...

I believe the Swiss and Irish have also favoured the love-heart as a decorative motif for carved love-tokens for domestic embellishment and utility. The traditional crafts make for difficult dating but the naive blockiness of this one possibly suggests quite an early piece before succeeding generations blinged up the original concept or a puritanical or Methodist culture.
Good-grief, it's not an American Quaker box is it?

Mike and Ann said...

See next blog entry - for Friday 13th September for answer.