Coffin lace, About 1850. Museum no. M.233-1984. Given by Julian Litten

Coffin lace, About 1850. Museum no. M.233-1984. Given by Julian Litten

Coffin lace
Tin, stamped and painted black
England
About 1850
Museum no. M.233-1984
Given by Julian Litten

This delicate tin 'lace' was made to decorate a coffin. Before 1800 coffins were usually adorned with brass and pewter ornament, sometimes quite expensively. The development of industrial rolling and stamping machinery enabled tin lace to be produced more cheaply and for a wider market. Manufacturers competed to create the most elaborate designs.