Corset busk, 18th century
Chip carved wood
Initialed “MW” twice and label to the verso
Single-piece busks were used in corsets and were intended to keep the front of the corset straight and upright. Typically made of wood, ivory, or bone, they were slipped into a pocket and tied in place. As seen here, busks were often carved, decorated, or inscribed with messages, and were popular gifts from men to their sweethearts. This piece is initialed “MW” twice to the verso with a label inscribed “Busk worn by Mary Weston in 1768 – Mrs. D.W. Leach”.
- minor nicks, abrasions, and cracks.