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The subject is a genre scene depicting a soldier sitting in profile with his back to the rail, splicing line. He is wearing wide-legged trousers, a short jacket with a round-cut collar and a Balmoral bonnet with a diced band and a toorie. In the foreground are several pieces of cloth, some of which appear to be rolled. The roll of cloth nearest to the figure may be a naval ensign. At the right of the work, line is belayed on a cleat next to a fairlead.
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