Full image caption
Calling for a Chrismas Box. Ink and watercolour over pencil. A group of four tradesmen knock on a front door, with caps off, calling for a Christmas box but are not greeted with any marked enthusiasm by the crotchety housekeeper who answers the door. Calling for Christmas boxes dates from the early seventeenth century when apprentices took round a collecting box, often an earthenware pot which was later broken to retrieve and share the contents.
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