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"Thrift is Blessing" mosaic, Edinburgh This mosaic, probably Victorian, is is the domed recess above the entrance to a bank on the corner of Lothian Road and Fountainbridge (the text "Fountainbridge Branch" runs under the mosaic). It shows two cornucopia (horns of plenty) spilling money (or maybe gold) into two vessels, around the motto "Thrift is Blessing". This choice of words might suggest to customers that by depositing their money in the bank they will be rewarded with rich returns. However, it is actually a quotation from Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice - Shylock says it as part of a defence of his profession of money lending.

The mosaic is made of glass smalti. The cornucopia and motto appear over a pleated cloth, with a blue background. Notice how several shades of green have been used to give the effect of the folds in the fabric. cornucopia

detail of mosaic

detail of smalti

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