The New World Tapestry

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cene Four
         1587 PANEL


All the Indian lifestyle illustrations shown in the top half of this scene are based on John White’s drawings of the period. The main picture below shows the joy of Ananias Dare and his wife Eleanor as they admire their newly born daughter they call Virginia exercising her lungs in her cradle. Virginia is the first child to be born to English settlers in the North American colony. Behind Eleanor stands the delighted midwife and alongside her is the priest. He’s rehearsing the christening ceremony.

Note that the heraldic shape of a shield for a female is a lozenge as is shown here for Eleanor and for Virginia Dare. However the designs are different for Eleanor’s shows that of her father John White while Virginia’s is that of her father Ananias Dare.

Equal to the concern of the new colonists about the differing attitudes to them by the various tribes is that of the continuation of essential regular supplies from the homeland. Things therefore come to a head at a meeting on 20 August when it is decided to send two factors from among the assistants back to England to ensure the speedy sending out of vital goods and reinforcements. However by 22nd they fail to find any volunteers so approach White himself to see if he will go. Knowing that his reappearance so soon back in England would raise eyebrows as to his commitment to Roanoke, White insists that he be given a written testimonial that he is not deserting his post but going at the request of the settlers. He also holds out for guarantees that his personal goods and chattels that he leaves behind will be safeguarded. All is agreed on 25th.

So it is that the Lion, the Monkey and the flyboat leave in September to make their separate ways back to England, with White aboard the Monkey arriving in Southampton on 8 November.

tapestry photo 1587 scene four

CHERVIL  Cerefolium.  ‘It hath in it certain windinesse, by means therof it procureth lust’.  Gerard.

STRAWBERRY  Fragaria.  ‘The distilled water drunke with white wine is good against the passion of the heart, reviving the spirits, and making the heart merry’. Gerard.

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