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Master: The Story of Abraham Series
Item: The Separation of Abraham and Lot, Genesis Ch. 13, v. 8-9

Luxury hangings for royal residences

William Sherwin (1645-1711)

Coronation of James II in Westminster Abbey, 1685 c.1685-7

RCIN 750180

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Historic tapestries in the Collection formed a major part of the magnificent decorations for the coronation of James II (1633–1701) in 1685. The Keeper of the Great Wardrobe was instructed by the Lord Chamberlain to display at Westminster the 'same Hangings and furniture which was furnished in every place at the Coronation of his late Majesty [Charles II]'. Among them were the Caesar and Joshua tapestries for Westminster Hall, as well as various other antique sets for the key chambers. Within the Abbey itself, the Abraham tapestries were hung about the altar and in St Edward's Chapel, and tapestries from this set are included in prints which recorded the occasion. The Circumcision of Isaac panel may have been selected to hang by the high altar in order to assert the continuity of the royal bloodline.