Brother Rabbit

Manufactory: Morris & Company

Designer: Designed by William Morris (British, Walthamstow, London 1834–1896 Hammersmith, London)

Date: design registered May 20, 1882; printed 1917–23

Culture: British, Merton Abbey

Medium: Cotton / block-printed

Dimensions: 8 ft. 10 1/2 in. × 37 1/2 in. (270.5 × 95.3 cm)

Classification: Textiles-Printed

Credit Line: Purchase, Edward C. Moore Jr. Gift, 1923

Accession Number: 23.163.5


William Morris designed this pattern in anticipation of the opening of the Merton Abbey works in 1881, though it was not registered with the Patent Office Register of Designs until 1882. The pattern was specifically intended for the indigo discharge method, which he perfected at Merton Abbey; it eventually was produced in at least four other colorways, including the Museum's red and white example. Morris' use of the paired animals and birds among fantastic foliage in this design clearly illustrates his interest in medieval European textiles.