Quirky and interesting

PUBLISHED: 16:02 03 April 2008 | UPDATED: 08:58 10 June 2010

THIS season visitors to A La Ronde will be able to see items not normally on display. Staff at the 16-sided National Trust property, on the outskirts of Exmouth, have been choosing the most quirky or interesting items in the collection. As the house is st

THIS season visitors to A La Ronde will be able to see items not normally on display. Staff at the 16-sided National Trust property, on the outskirts of Exmouth, have been choosing the most quirky or interesting items in the collection. As the house is stuffed full of the many objects and mementoes collected by the Parminter cousins during their grand tour of Europe in the late 18th century, there are a good many to choose from.

The first item to be shown is the engraving of the tomb of Madame Laughans. It is normally out of sight within an inner compartment of a table decorated by Jane Parminter in 1802. Inlaid with semi-precious stones, marble, glass, gems and seals, the somewhat macabre engraving is of Madame Laughans, who died in childbirth.

Assistant property manager Salli Carr-Griffin says: "Why they chose to use this engraving is a bit of a mystery. One thought could be that they passed through Hindelbanck when in Europe, visited the tomb and were inspired by it. It's rather touching that it is nestled so carefully within the centre of the table which has been so elaborately worked."

The engraving will be on display from now until Wednesday, April 30, during normal opening hours.

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