One of the first Christmas cards, in a frame, dating from 1843 and showing a family eating Christmas dinner.
The card was commissioned by Sir Henry Cole who had the card designed by J.C. Horsley a well known artist who also painted portraits of Prince Albert and Queen Victoria. He was an active public figure who had been a Captain in the Dragoon Guards, was involved in the introduction of the penny post, helped organise the Great Exhibition in 1851 and was a founder of the Victoria & Albert Museum.
1,000 cards were printed and they were sold at one shilling each (5p), but only around 20 are thought to have survived, very few of which are in private hands, the majority being in museums or public archives.
This card is addressed to a Miss Tripsack who was a close friend of the family of poetess Elizabeth Moulton Barrett who, in 1846, married Robert Browning. There is also some supporting correspondence, ephemera and newspaper cuttings concerning the card, VG.