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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

Gobelins Tapestry Factory

Don Quixote cured of his folly by wisdom c.1786

RCIN 3191

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Taken from the 1605 novel by Miguel de Cervantes (1547–1616), the scene at the centre of this tapestry shows Don Quixote being cured of his folly by wisdom. The depiction is however eclipsed by the highly decorative borders, on a pink ground filled with fruit, flowers and trophies. The border designers were paid correspondingly more than the artist, Charles-Antoine Coypel, who provided the cartoon for the central scene. 

This panel is one of four in the Royal Collection from a series of 28 showing Don Quixote (see RCINs 3192, 3193, 3194). The group was presented by Louis XVI of France to the artist Richard Cosway (1742–1821) in 1788, as a gesture of thanks for four tapestry cartoons that Cosway had given to him for display in the Louvre. Cosway presented them to the Prince of Wales, later George IV (1762–1830), shortly afterwards and they were hung at his residence in Carlton House until c.1823, when they were moved to Buckingham Palace.