Tuesday 13 August 2013

Adam & Eve & The Worshipful Company of Needlemakers

Adam and Eve, exiled from Paradise, often find themselves cosily relocated on many school girl samplers. It has always been something of a small wonder to me that their mostly unclothed bodies have been worked with consummate care by innocent young girls. How can this be? One answer maybe that Adam and Eve feature on the coats of arms of The Worshipful Company of Needlemakers - needlemaking being said to date from the time of Adam and Eve when they sewed fig leaves to clothe their nakedness. The Needlemakers shield which appears in the coat-of-arms was in use from the time when the company was granted livery in 1656. It appears on the head of the Beadle’s staff which dates from circa 1700 and presents three needles surmounted by coronets. One of the treasures of the company is a magnificent silver statuette of Dorcas (or Tabitha) which is always placed on the table before the Master at formal dinners. (Dorcas was a member of the early Christian community in Joppa, now Jaffa, an ancient seaport of Judea. She was noted for her acts of charity, in particular for making garments and giving them to needy widows.) The raising of charitable funds is one of the core objectives of the Company today. Click here for more details.

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