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MILA CONTINI

ANCIENT
EGYPT

TO THE
PRESENT

DAY

Fashion
The

history of fashion

is

the history of

life.

more than the wearing of


caveman with his blue
Cretan ladies who left their bosoms

For fashion

is

far

clothes; the primitive


paint, the

bare, the hair styles


social

on Roman

statues, the

of the Renaissance courts, even

life

the slim-hipped, boyish figures of twentieth-

century

women,

are but a

few of the by-

products of fashion.

r, 3Jr.

Since earliest times a person's clothes have

and the

reflected his status, taste, profession,

history and climate of the country he inhabits.

So

much

is

the character of

man

expressed in

book such as this, which


shows changing fashions from the earliest to
the most recent times, is a history book of a
his clothes that a

peculiarly fascinating kind.

Nearly 550

illustrations, all

but

few

in

colour, trace the history of clothes since the

dawn of

civilisation in

guesswork

the

is

no

from

art

Egypt. There

eras are illustrated

contemporary with the period drawings, bas;

relief carvings, statues, ancient manuscripts,

great paintings of the Renaissance and

Baroque

periods, engravings, and clothes and accessories now preserved in museums, all can be

found

in this

absorbing book.

continued on back flap

Fashion
FROM ANCIENT EGYPT TO THE PRESENT DAY

Roman

Following page: Accessories

in a

sandaK. Bas-relief. Civic

woman's wardrobe. Roman

bas-relief

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ivic

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Fash ion

FROM ANCIENT EGYPT TO THE PRESENT DAY

By

MILA CONTINI

Edited by

JAMES LAVER

Foreword by

COUNT

Introduction by

EMILIO PUCCI

JANEY IRONSIDE

PROFESSOR OF FASHION DESIGN, ROYAL COLLEGE OF ART,

THE ODYSSEY PRESS

LONDON

New

York

published in 196s by

850 Third Avenue.

The Odyssey

Press. Inc.

New York. New York.

Copyright 1965 Arnoldo Mondadori-Ceam-Milano


Translation

'|J

Copyright 1965 Paul Hamlyn Ltd

Printed in Italy - Officine Grafiche A.

Mondadori

Verona

Library of Congress Catalogue Card Number: 65-20567


Layout by Fiorenzo Giorgi

Frieze ot cosmetic jars. First century. Spoleto

Museum

CONTENTS
Foreword

ii

Introduction

12

Egypt

13

Crete and Greece

27

The Etruscans and Romans

43

The Middle Ages

59

The

85

Fifteenth Century

The Sixteenth Century

in

The Seventeenth Century

H3

The Eighteenth Century

177

The Nineteenth Century

217

The Twentieth Century

261

Fashion Today

299

Index

3i8

Picture

Acknowledgements

321

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FOREWORD
only

In the past,

and highly privileged

a small

group of individuals were interested


call

in

what we

fashion.

Today, what once concerned a minority has


not only
a matter of general interest
in clothing, but in all expressions of contemporary living, from architecture to interior
decoration, from the automobile to the refrigera-

become

The

tor.

pervasive

influence

of

television,

profusely illustrated and well-produced


zines,
fast,

window

easy air

maga-

modern shops, and


transportation, have made fashion
displays in

today one of the determining factors in civilised


Entire populations of countries have a visual

acquaintance with what


clothing

seeing

Soviet Union, and having observed, close up,


the impressions and reactions of their diverse
citizens,

field.

The

result has

democratisation of
is

is

produced

the

most deAnd, because

been

taste.

in

comparing, then weighing, vast

num-

making
independent value judgements based on the two
essential elements of fashion: form and colour.
Not only does fashion today reach more
bers of individuals are, for the first time,

people than ever;

it

draws entire peoples to-

can say that fashion

is

one of the

principal factors in arriving at an understanding

among

the peoples of the world.

This most interesting book, realised with


great sensitivity and particular subtlety,
for

which there has long been

who

living.

sirable

Allow me to make a statement which


may seem exaggerated: Having shown my
collection in every country in the world, from
Austria to America, from Cuba to Canada,
from Greece to Japan, from Uruguay to the
gether.

are interested in the

non of fashion.

It is

need.

It is

is

one

for

all

wonderful phenome-

quick but detailed excur-

sion across centuries of past history into the

marvellous world of aesthetics.


feel in the

It is

for

all

who

things of today a sense of progress and

achievement.

It

will appeal to those

back with nostalgia on past

young who,

eras,

who

look

and to the

in their continual search for the

by youth
many centuries ago, motivated by the same

new,

will sec the 'newness' discovered

desire for fresh discovery they feel today.

Count Emilio Pucci


A

parallel

between fashion and the visual arts. Left:


A painting by Paul Cezanne

fashion plate. Right

Left:

'Venus and Cupid'. Detail. Lucas Cranach. Galleria

Borghese,

Rome
1

INTRODUCTION
A history of fashion is a history of life
of fashion

Cibber

is

to

be out of

in the eighteenth century

many semi-ironical
way people dress is a
well as of their

statements,

'To be out

Colley

said

life,'

and

this, like

true.

is

The

of their times

reflection

with ancient Egypt, Greece and

Rome those
civilisation

study of
fashion

life

up

Today

countries

this

we

the 'cradle' of

call

book provides

fascinating

and the evolution of

and

taste

is

not just international;

it

is

intercontinental and, subject to local variations


in material, colour or climate,

it

will

become

increasingly so in our rapidly shrinking world.

Some

people

may

deplore

tain a nostalgic attitude

this

trend and main-

towards the picturesque

garments of other ages, but such garments

outgrow

their usefulness, just as

do outdated

machines. Beautiful but voluminous, hampering

and

uncomfortable

museums

or

at

clothes

fancy-dress

for

rallies.

now

differences in

dress are disappearing.


In the twentieth century, techniques

production, the emancipation of

revolution in

pictures.

some

and

man-made fibres have effected


style, made plain by these

Although our evening

relationship to the

in history,

of mass

women

dresses

still

more formal

bear

periods

our daytime clothes do not. Excessive

ornamentation and cumbersome design hardly

to the present time.

fashion

are cherished

sign of wealth and class;

the invention of

local weather.

Starting

cars

Costly and inconvenient clothes were once

as

and of the

class, financial status

motor

veteran

now

belong

parties

just

in
as

belong to
people

a civilisation

run by machines

and

in a hurry.

Perusing

this

book,

two

points impress me. Firstly,

quite

different

little

standards

how

of physical beauty, both masculine and feminine,


have changed through the ages, in
oddities in the

Secondly,

how

way of

coiffure

spite

of minor

and corsetry.

obvious and revealing of our era

are the recent changes in dress design.

This

is

fashion:

the fascination of studying a history of


it is

the study of life.

Janey Ironside
Professor oj Fashion Design,

Royal College of Art,


London

Egyptian dancer.

Egypt

New Kingdom. The Egyptian Museum

*\

*>

i*

The word Egypt evokes

the

women

names of three

if by magic: Hatshepsut, Nefertiti, Cleopatra.


These women, separated by thousands of years,
nevertheless epitomise the history and traditions of

as

Egypt. This

woman

so partly because

is

in ancient

Egypt was always honoured and treated with respect.


In a papyrus of the time this precept appears: 'Never
Remember you burdened
forget your mother.
.

womb

her

for a long time,

and when her time had

passed she gave birth to you. For three long years she
carried

you on her shoulders and

offered her breast to

your mouth. She reared you and was not offended by

When you went

your dirty ways.

to school

and

re-

Moreover she had built for herself a


secret tomb amongst the sandhills on the western
bank of the Nile, which became the first of the
famous tombs of the 'Valley of Kings'.
Legend says that her life was marked by an episode
which was to have immeasurable consequences. One
day she went with her maids for her usual ablutions in
unfinished.'

the Nile waters,

and she saw floating on the stream


a

baby looked healthy and had perfect

where she brought him

came

Moses.

your teacher with bread and beer

daily to

women in ancient times almost certainly

Egyptian

to

stemmed from

the quasi-matriarchal structure of

Egyptian society. In

fact the

home, and

master of the

woman was

property and future revenue to his wife

his

the real

the husband transferred


as part

We

can

Nefertiti,

the

still

King Akhenaten's

Cairo Museum, and

of

the other one

woman.

She was the daughter of Pharaoh Thutmosis

I,

and

bride,

(1580-950
is

the

name

is

in Berlin

only god, the Sun

and

is

ot

portraits ot

who lived during


One is in the

B.C.).

an unfinished head

The queen, who joined

considered as the prototype of the Egyptian

him

in crystal-

orange-coloured sandstone touched up

line,

Hatshepsut more than any other queen might be

up, giving

admire two very famous

New Kingdom

all

the marriage contract.

features: she

picked him up, and took him to the royal palace,

ceived instruction there in writing and counting, she

brought from home.' The great consideration shown

new-born baby. (In those times it


was usual to entrust unwanted babies to the great
river, placing them in baskets ot woven reeds.) The
basket containing

in ink;

polychrome

bust.

her husband in the cult of an

God

who

Aten, and

had

six

daughters, appears to us with her head polished like

one of the ivory

balls

with which her

little

daughters

shared the throne with her father during his lifetime.

When

Thutmosis

Thutmosis

died, she reigned together

her half-brother

II,

with

well as husband

as

Left:

Egyptian

head

with

formal

hair

style. Beloir:

Pharaoh's head. Louvre

(marriage between blood-relations was quite usual in

Pharaonic dynasties); and

Thutmosis

III

at his death, setting aside

(her husband's son

by

concubine) she

reigned over the land for twenty-two years. Tradition

demanded

that a

Pharaoh should be of divine

Hatshepsut accordingly circulated the

descent, so

legend of her divine birth, which held that she was


the daughter

of Ahmasi (the legitimate wife of

Thutmosis

I)

change her

sex,

and the god Anion. She

monuments and

of the Pharaohs, and on

had

herself

also

and wore on her chin the

represented

without

decided to
false

beard

bas-reliefs

breasts,

like

warrior. She chose as her attributes 'Son of the Sun'

and 'Lord of the


She was
at

a great

Two

Lands'.

queen,

who managed to keep order

home without becoming

abroad without terrible

tyrant,

sacrifices.

commerce, and developed new


countries; she embellished the

and peace

She encouraged
links

with other

town of Karnak with

two obelisks dedicated to Anion, and she realised a


dream of her father's by building a magnificent
temple

in Deir el-Bahri. She restored many ancient


temples which the Hyksos kings had damaged. Her
achievements enabled her to proudly claim 'I rebuilt

what found
I

in ruins,

completed what had been

left

Following pages: Bedouins

from

the

tomb of Khnumhotep, wearing

brightly-

patterned woollen tunics. Xllth Dynasty. Oriental Institute. Chicago

\
I

played. In various bas-reliefs

on Akhenaten's

nestling

we

can see her prettily

lap, dressed in a transparent

pleated linen two-piece dress.

Cleopatra,

'Queen of Kings' (69-30

the

B.C.)

seduced Caesar, then Anthony, then Octavian, with


her intelligence, her wealth, her beauty and her

woven with

elegance. She had dresses of linen

gold,

wigs of every colour, splendid jewels.


For three thousand years the Egyptian
dress did not

change very much,

as

the portraits of these three queens.

we

style

of

can see from

Egypt

is

an un-

changing land of even landscapes; her river every


year swells and overflows to
sun blazing
this

down on

immutable

her

is

setting the

banks; the

fertilise its

never veiled by mist. In

Egyptian

spirit

developed.

Art, philosophy, culture, styles of dress and


are fundamentally

dominated by

of life, unchanging both in


its

its

a static

costume

conception

external features and in

religion.

This religion, which continued unalterably for

thousands of years and was founded on the cult of


eternity,

prevented any fundamental change in the

culture of the Egyptian people for about three thou-

sand years. Quarrels and wars, triumphs and defeats,


periods of

mourning and periods of joy, everything

was governed by

made Egyptians
as

the

deep religious compulsion that

most devout men

in the world,

recorded by Herodotus, the famed chronicler of

Next

antiquity.

to Pharaoh,

and sometimes even

before him, the Great Priest with

power

in the land.

accompanied by

Every

ritual

all

his

court held

act in life or death

was

ceremony. The mass of the

people were not, however, concerned in these cere-

monies which were reserved to the Pharaoh, the


nobility,

and the warriors. Religion, with

its

crowd

of gods, half human, half animal, led believers to-

wards immortality, the

life

beyond, the next world.

Because of this the temples, the royal palaces, the

pyramids were

built so as to resist, as indeed they

have, the attacks of time and of men.

We

can

Egyptian
palaces,

still

life

see

all

the various aspects of ancient

inscribed

on the walls of the temples,

and pyramids, which might be likened to the

pages of an exceptional encyclopedia.

It is

precisely

from the examination of these 'pages' that we derive


our knowledge of both masculine and feminine
attire,

apparently unchanging or

at least

changing

slowly, throughout the thousands of years.


In the

beginning the onlv garment was

Thoth, god of wisdom, dressed in a triangular,


skirt. New Kingdom. Cairo Museum

a loin-

stiffened

cloth.

It

would be made of linen

the Great

or

Priest,

woven

the animal

tor the Pharaoh, tor

men of importance; of leather

or for

vegetable fibres (never of sheep's wool, as

was considered unclean)

for the

common

would be enriched
with golden threads; one or more very transparent
skirts might be worn over it, secured at the waist by a
belt. These skirts could be long, down below the
knee, or else short, in which case they would be tripeople. Often the royal loincloth

angular and stiffened, not unlike the shape of the

pyramids.

The Great

Priest

would throw

leopard

smooth

men wore no

beard;

chin was a sign of distinction and the everyday use of


a

copper razor was recommended. Only

of mourning, or during
Nefretere, wife of

bat-wing

Amosis I, wearing
Thebes

sleeves. Fresco.

in a

journey abroad was

period
it

a linen tunic

per-

And

yet a beard could be a sign

gods had beards

'like lapis-

Thus kings, who were children of the gods,


would on ceremonial occasions wear thin lozenge-

lazuli'.

shaped

false

beards,

prettily

curled

and always

perfumed.

The women were


or

less like

dressed

or

undressed

more

men. Their garments were always of

the

the finest linen, very transparent, often pleated (in a

type of 'sun-ray' pleating).

what

sented in

long tight

skin over his pleated skirt.

Elegant Egyptian

missible not to shave.

ot distinction. All the

is

dress,

almost

Queen

Nefertiti

a fashion plate,

and over

it

is

repre-

wearing

kind of pleated tunic

with bat-wing sleeves, the belt very high under the

bosom (Empire fashion), and a wide


of many strands ot necklaces. This
modest

attire,

collar
is

composed

a particularly

because the same queen liked to wear

with
Bas-relief.

Temple of Komb

Ombo

19

20

Jewel box. Tomb of El Kubaine. Xlth or Xllth Dynasty.


Vienna Museum

Egyptian necklace of gold and amethysts

The Queen Ankhesenamun putting

Left:

touches to King Tutankhamen's

toilet.

finishing

Back of the gold-

Museum

plated throne. Cairo


a transparent tunic,

over

belts,

wardrobe, both

men and

.for

but revealed the figure, which in any case was never

shining, shaven head

much

fashion

concealed, as the fabrics used were always

extremely transparent. The

women

dancers

would

perform their acrobatic dances wearing only

made of

pearls

a belt

and gold which emphasised

smooth nakedness (Egyptian

their

women did not tolerate

on their body, and got rid of it by daily


use of pumice stone).
The women of the common people would take off
any hair

at all

completely unabashed,

their tunics

in

order to gain

in

order for

or wigs.

The wig played a fundamental

open from the navel downwards,

diminutive loincloth. This veiled the breasts

magenta was quite

red was excluded,

gowns,

demanded

was

that

it

for

part in the Egyptian

women. To have

sign of nobility, but

should be covered with

wig of real hair, sometimes lined with vegetable


fibres. Even coloured or gilded wigs might be worn.

The

relatives

of a dead person placed

tomb, together with


sary

to

his

daily

all

his

wigs

in his

the other accessories neces-

Whether
was parted in little plaits and
custom clearly African. In order

life

and adornment.

natural or false, hair

locks according to a
to

be elegant

it

was

essential to

look after one's

hair.

freedom of movement. Merit, the friend of Sinuhe


'the lonely', the

hesitate to

very famous physician, would not

remove her

tunic

when

she

her 'master' as a nurse, just because she did not


to spoil

it.

Nubian ring of gold and semi-precious

stones

was helping

want

And nobody minded.

Quite often women's dresses had

very deep neck-

by wide shoulder straps. Then came the


fashion of having one shoulder bare, as in the time of
the mythical Amazons, the warrior women.

line,

held

All the colours of the


tian fabrics,

only to wigs.
as the

rainbow were used

in

Egyp-

except for black, which was confined

Red was

generally not favoured, except

colour of the Pharaoh's 'Northern Crown'. At

best red

meant 'dreadful

violence', at worst 'perverse

wickedness'. Red-haired men, ginger dogs and don-

keys were accursed; a red thing was considered

noxious thing, and the scribes would write in red ink

words of ill omen on their papyrus. White was a


happy colour, the colour of the 'Southern Crown';
the

blue
air;

reminded one of the skin of Anion, god of the


green stood for

symbol of gold, the

life

flesh

and youth; yellow was the


of immortal gods.

Though
21

V.

Wooden

Above:

chest.

Women at their toilet. From a sarcophagus.

Right:

Egyptian Museum, Turin

Cairo

Museum

Below:

couple

Tomb

at table.

of Raurose. Thebes

7t

Below: King Zoser, wearing an elegantly

trimmed beard. Metropolitan Museum,


New York

A woman

nothing but your love ...


neglecting
hair

papyri

my

appearance

and be ready

we

'My

in love writes

at

heart can think of

run swiftly towards you,


.

But

will curl

my

any moment.' In the medical

find prescriptions for creams to nourish

the scalp, lotions to fight baldness, dyes to eliminate

white

hair,

perfumes and

gala wigs, to be

worn

as

fixatives.

There were

one would wear

a hat,

also

over

the real hair.

The men's

hair style

was usually of a round shape

following the lines of the head. This haircut,


less short,

went through many

could be hidden or

combed down on
22

else

more

or

variations: the ears

uncovered, the hair might be

the nape of the neck

(as

the Beatles

*tr**

do today) or
bas-reliefs

else

away from

sometimes

we

the face. In frescoes and

also see longer hair styles

and wigs, shoulder-length or curling


level.

Women in general
a

new

down

to chest

wear their hair


would often happily

preferred to

long, like the goddesses, but

follow

H*

fashion and cut

it

to shoulder length,

round masculine haircut. During the


Old Kingdom elegant women tended to imitate the
or else adopt the

masculine fashions; during the


opposite

popular:
clasps,

was

the

Moreover ornaments were very

true.

jewels,

New Kingdom

golden braids on the forehead,

bangles, flowers (especially the lotus)

and

coloured ribbons in the hair.

The

lotus flower,

symbol of Egypt

as the tulip

is

of

Eg) ptian mirror

23

sweet scent, and the unscented white lotus

cate

flowered on stagnant waters by the edge of the

on

deserts,

canals,

and on the banks of the Nile.

temples the capital of columns and

pillars

In

represented

of budding lotus blossoms. Beautiful women

a cluster

were compared to the nenuphar, the lotus. The


rhizome of the flower was considered a delicacy and
was the basis of exquisite dishes.

Around 1400
should have an

fashion

B.C.

decreed that heads

elongated shape,

and princesses

actually polished their heads to enhance the elegance

of their profile. This fashion was reputed to have been


launched by Nefertiti's
said that

six daughters,

of whom

it

was

witch doctors had elongated and narrowed

their heads

during birth, so

the worst pains of labour.

as to

When

mother
grew up,

spare their
the girls

Court ladies wore false pieces on their necks to


modify the shape of their own heads in imitation.

the

The

ultimate refinement for the most fashionable

women

(and

men

too)

was

to place at the top of their

heads a cone of scented grease, which

would slowly

melt with the heat of the body and the

warm atmos-

would slowly
perfumes, the skin growing

phere, so that head and shoulders

become bathed
oily

in rare

and glistening, the clothes clinging

revealing

all its

shape.

As

to the

a reaction to these

body,

extrava-

gances the priests started shaving their heads and

keeping them smooth. Children usually wore


curled lock

Perfume container

in alabaster.

Cairo

Museum

why

in

'child'

An
Holland, was present everywhere in Egyptian

life.

growing from the primeval waters was


the cradle of the sun on the First Morning, according
to one of the numerous traditions concerning the
creation of the universe. The blue lotus, with its deli-

great lotus

on

their right temple. This

the reason

is

Egyptian writing the hieroglyphic meaning

is

represented by a stylised curl.

essential characteristic

of Egyptian elegance

was the care of the body. Queen Nitocris believed an


elegant person should bathe every morning; and

wash

his hands,

(teeth are not

arms and neck before and

after

meals

mentioned) with water containing

natron (natural calcium carbonate) and

detergent

Right: Torso, supposedly of Nefertiti, wearing finely

Below:

24

Wooden

cosmetic pots. Louvre

pleated tunic. Louvre

composed of clay arid ashes. She also recommended daily massage to keep slim, the use of pumice

trees,

stone on knees and elbows to soften the skin

(still

sovereign Egypt, mother of Horus and Isis' was

beauticians today) and

There were many perfumes,

gold made flesh. Gold, the divine metal, had the


power of conferring eternal survival, which is why
mummies were given golden masks. The King in the

myrrh with

New Kingdom decorated his personal warriors with

paste

recommended by modern
frictions

with scented

burn and

insect bites.

extracted

from

oils to

avoid the danger of sun-

different resins;

deli-

its

perfume exand reasonably

cate fragrance, stibid, a very expensive

tracted

from

and teak

acacia

priced incense with

seeds,

body of the heavens,

goddess with

living soul of the

cow body, wet-nurse of

medals that were 'golden

and rewarded

flies',

his

ministers with golden trinkets.

Women

mild aroma.

its

'support and

of course wore jewels, and heaped

their

Make-up was very important and every woman


would know how to apply it herself, choosing what

jewel boxes with necklaces of hollowed gold beads,

was fashionable to smear the face


white foundation, a creamy paste based on

decorated rectangular plates hanging from a chain,

suited her most.

with

It

white lead paint (rather dangerous to health,


basis
lips

lead carbonate).

is

with an orangy

Women

lipstick,

modern jewels

delicately outlining

and

was
also placed on mummies, above the abdominal
incision which the embalmer had cut in the body to
Eye make-up was

most important part of the

The eye would be lengthened and enof coal-black kohl (the same

women

the

still

nowadays), shaded on the

upper and lower eyelid with

powder;

green malachite

eyebrows would be enhanced and

lengthened with a dark grey antimony powder, the


line arching

down on

to the cheek in an arabesque.

This arabesque was the symbol of clairvoyancy. Both

would be

finger nails and toe nails

lacquered. Per-

fumes, cosmetics, creams and lotions were contained


in little jars

made

and

pots, little bottles

woman's

a bazaar, as

and boxes, which

dressing table (or a man's) look like

they often do today.

person would also

own

well-groomed

battery of little brushes and

sticks for outlining the eyes, mirrors,

combs made of

copper and gold and gadgets to manicure the

nails.

Jewels were numerous and of varied shapes and


sizes,

are imitations of antique trinkets that

belonged to distinguished princesses

like the princess

of Dahshur, or aspiring court ladies

was

Silver

the

Many

also used;

was

it

like Senebtisi.

called the 'white metal'

and considered the substance 'of which are made the


bones of the gold-fleshed gods'. But

it

was more

generally used for ornamentation; in the shape of

hammered thin plates and encrustations it was applied


to decorate statues, furniture

and

trinkets.

Excavations have also yielded jewels which were


precious because of the

workmanship and not be-

cause of the high value of the materials used. For

were made of pottery and


wrapped in strands around mummies; the beads
would have various shapes, making up necklaces that
instance coloured beads

extract the viscera.

a line

worn on

be

their

would colour

clairvoyant powers to the wearer. This amulet

used by Bedouin

circlets to

forehead, dangling earrings, cylindrical rings.

against sterility, believed to give perfect health

larged with

made of golden shells,

belts

rings, breastplates, finely

as its

them with a little brush; a touch of the same shade


would be applied to the cheeks, starting from the
cheekbones and working out towards the temples.
Eyes were considered the most important part of the
face; they were so important that they were reproduced on amulets. The eye of the god was a charm

daily toilette.

worked crowns,

delicately

and gold was the favourite metal.

It

was valued

looked

like

collars,

statues representing

wear round the neck

Of glass,

little

mummies, amulets
keep away evil spirits.

to

'the stone that melts',

would make
blue,

blue or green amulets,


divine

to

Egyptian craftsmen

trinkets as light as a breath, coloured in

green, purple and red. These ancient fore-

runners of tiny Venetian glass beads could be

made

was utilised
making of many other objects, such as iridesSeveral
fragile, precious perfume bottles.

into necklaces, bracelets, earrings. Glass


in the
cent,

samples of such

work have been found

Pharaoh tombs, and together with the


the bas-reliefs they
for

life; a

still

the

and

show the love that Egyptians had


made them think of death as 'a

love which

painful event' although

world.

in

frescoes

it

led to a life

beyond

this

On the walls of the Theban catacombs we can

admire the intimate reunions

of the living

and

not only on account of its high price but also because

the dead, together gravely inhaling the scent of the

of its symbolic meaning. Gold was thought of

blue lotus flower which emanates from a glass cup

brilliant
Is

26

and incorruptible

that

were

his

sons.

flesh

as

the

of the Sun, and of the

The goddess Hathor-

gesture

which combines sensuous pleasure with

magic of rebirth

in spring.

the

Greek ring with figure of Hera. Fourth century. Victoria


and Albert Museum, London

Crete and Greece

'"-.;.-

K38

is

name. She has

(which
a

nobody knows

called the Parisienne, but

She
real

why she was nicknamed

is

the 'Parisian'

bosom and

slim figure, a full

her

upturned French nose

little

girl),

narrow waist

sheathed in a leather corset. She wears a long flounced


skirt,

covered by

a half skirt so short

Her bodice has

the hips.

it

down

sleeves

but leaves her breasts uncovered. This

who

the girl

women were free,

Cretan
they had

in the frescoes

a taste for frivolity

elbows

to the
is

the dress of

around 1700

lived in Crete

today admired

barely reaches

and

B.C.,

is

windows and

ventilate the

rooms.

system of central heating and plumbing

allowed constant use of hot and cold water, that

flowed from
walls

silver taps into solid silver basins.

were decorated

in bright colours

The

and so was the

tableware. Flowers, leaves and butterflies were the


recurrent decorative motifs.

The Cretans made

sacrifices to a creature, half-

half-man, hidden

bull,

in

labyrinth at Cnossos.

Each month, amidst laughter, songs and dances,

of Cnossos Palace.

strong-willed creatures

beautiful children and virgins proficient in the dance

and spent long hours

with the bulls were dedicated to him. These

in

beautifying themselves, earning a reputation as the


best-dressed

freely enter the

perfect

women in the known world. They were

bulls,

considered sacred animals, were reared in the 'house

of the

bulls', a citadel

with arena,

stalls,

lawns, school

were forever changtrimmed with layers of

houses, and quarters for the priests. Every day the

but they

backs and between the horns of the bulls, risking

always retained the skin-tight bodice and bare breasts,

They danced completely naked, shining


with aromatic oil, as any garment would have ham-

rather fickle, and their fashions


ing: full skirts, bell-shaped,

trimmed with coloured

flounces or

them with an extremely

occasionally veiling

woven of gold and

parent material,

Sometimes
little

stripes

dresses

were covered with innumerable

gold plates joined together in shapes like


butterfly, or a

fish, a

trans-

silver thread.

palm

cuttle-

was the

Cretan

and wore

art)

They had

small,

it

tall

in a

pony

tail

complicated

down

little

their lives.

pered their agile movements.


Incapable of keeping a promise or speaking the
truth (the proverbial

reprimand was

'he lies like a

(the

the neck.

hats

which

were fixed on to the head with long gold hat

They

performed acrobatic turns on the

motif of

decorative

characteristic

initiates

Cretan'), gay and vivacious, with the reputation for

leaf.

Women combed their long hair in spiral curls


spiral

young

Graceful head of Artemis wearing


frieze

chignon.

From

on the Parthenon. Acropolis Museum, Athens

pins.

enormous amount of time in making


up, and also in gossiping. They were incredibly vain
and sewed their own dresses, to make sure these were
spent an

exclusive models.

The

beautiful

frescoes

women who

still

live for us in the

of the Minoan palace obviously loved jewels

very much.

They

are

shown with long, thin neckneck two and three times;

laces that encircled the

jingling gold earrings; strands of pearls to braid in


their hair

and engraved belts made of precious metals.

men were as elegant and

Cretan

women. Their
different

from

loincloths

were short and simple, but

fell

down

weighted by

in front into an oblique

a net

of pearls.

very proud of their wasp waists, and


their midriffs

as their

the Egyptian ones, because the lower

corner of the fold


point, often

coquettish

with wide leather

chests stand out.

belts

They wore very

high boots, and like the

women

Men were

would pull in
to make their

decorative knee-

they shaved care-

had a daily bath and oiled their bodies.


Cretan houses were not merely impressive: they
were luxuriously comfortable. The breeze could
fully,

showing head of the bride of King Peirithoos.


Temple of Zeus. Museum, Olympia
Left: Detail

29

Women
on

dressing.

a plate.

Leningrad

Decoration

Hermitage Museum,

being vain revellers, the Cretan people nevertheless

hunting, throwing the javelin, wrestling, running

which disappeared
when the island was invaded by the Greeks, who
landed there about the year noo B.C., armed with

and jumping to develop their bodies.


Greek women, perhaps not as beautiful

gave

the

to a splendid civilisation,

life

new

victorious metal: iron.

very

tall,

itself in

The Hellenic World


The

life

of an Athenian was divided into four stages:

pais, ephebos, aner, geron

the child,

and old man. From the age of

would

adolescent,

six the 'free'

man

Greek

attend school, accompanied by a slave, his

paidagogos.

He would

continue his studies even after

the age of fourteen or sixteen, often spurred

sandalwood

birch,

on by

with which the teacher would

inculcate love of learning.

The education of

the

young Greek would include writing, music and


gymnastics, to which in later centuries drawing and
painting were added. Gymnastics were considered a
fundamental element of education;
nastics

number of

well

as

gym-

other sports were taught

Minoan women, showing

32

as

typical dress, hair styles

as

the

them, were rather plump and not

statues that depict

although

still

graceful. Their

the gynaeceum, the

women's

unfolded

life

quarters. Spartan

women, however, trained like men at competitive


games. Women's education was almost completely
limited to home management, and was given within
the confines of the home by their mother or nurse,

who would
spin,
ful

teach

them how

to read, write, reckon,

weave, sew and embroider.

body they would

learn

how

To

acquire a grace-

to dance,

and for the

entertainment of their future husbands they would


learn music and singing.

The mass of Greek women


anonymity. 'The slave has no

lived in complete

will

of

has a will, but


Aristotle.

practice of

it

is

Women

own;

the

woman

too

his

child has a will, but an incomplete one;

impotent', was the opinion of

had only one safeguard, the

monogamy. Marriage was arranged by

the parents of the bride and bridegroom, and the

and jewellery. Fresco from the Palace of Minos, Cnossus

contract

was based on the economic

woman, on

whom

status

of the

her father had to settle a

dowry

money, jewellery, a trousseau and slaves.


The nuptial ceremonies were always complicated
after reaching agreement on the dowry, the marriage
was celebrated in the bride's father's home, in the
in

toilet

of the Goddess Juno:

Her chamber

And

was another feast, again in the


bride's home, a feast which was preceded by the
ritual bathing ot the couple. During the reception,
according to a custom which is still in existence in

Combed

villages in the south

of Greece, the

men

gregated on one side of the room, while

remained on the opposite


feasting,

side.

with cakes and wine

bridegroom would

invite

women

There would be

in plenty.

the

con-

bride,

Then

veiled

dressed in white, to step into a chariot that

the

and

would

bring her to his father's house, accompanied by his


friends,

and by

women

songs celebrating
the

playing the lyre and singing

then she sought, by

with ambrosia

She

many

day

rather than those of the Heroic Age, describes the

presence of witnesses, but not necessarily of the bride.


After a few days there

own

describing the details of the customs of his

'ulcan built

first

purified, with fragrant oil anointing

out her flaming locks,

Wreathed

her lovely skin


.

and with her hand

the thick masses of the glossy hair,

Immortal, bright, that crowned the imperial head,

robe ambrosial thin, by Pallas wrought

She donned, with many

a curious pattern traced,

With golden brooch beneath her breast confined.

Her gown, from which


She

girt about her

hundred

in three bright

tassels

Her glittering gems suspended from


Then

o'er her

beauteous

And

hung,

drops,

her ears

head the imperial Goddess threw

veil,

new-wrought,

as sunlight white;

on her well-turnedfeet her sandals bound.

Hymen. As a symbol of possession,

bridegroom, before entering the house, would

pick the bride up in his arms, and put her

down

Dress from a drawing in

a shrine.

Cnossus

in

the presence of his parents. After further ritual, such


as

the initiation into the worship of the family gods,

withdraw to their bridalchamber, although they would still be accompanied


by young men and women singing the epithalamium. And there, alone at last, the husband could
contemplate the face, until then hidden from him,
of the woman who was to be his life-companion.
the married couple could

Greek Fashion
Hairdressing was always of great importance.
first

hint of the cult of hairdressing in the

world can be found

in

the Iliad,

The

Greek

when Homer,

Cretan jewellery

Above: Exekias, showing the simplicity of archaic dress.


Vase from Volci. The Etruscan-Gregorian Museum.
Vatican City. Above right: Dancing Maenad. Painting on
a vase.

National

fountain. Detail

Museum,
from

Naples. Right:

a vase. British

A woman

at a

Museum, London

women

always wore their hair long,


on the back of the head; Spartan
women wore their hair in a pony tail. In the Doric
period, the bride would have her hair cut, on the day

Athenian

combed

into a knot

of her marriage,

as a sign

tion of personal vanity.

of humility and renuncia-

An

unfaithful wife

might

have her head shaved by her husband. Later on hair34

Votive

relief

dressing

used in the cult of Persephone.

became more

was gathered

subtle,

more of an

From

Locri. National

art in itself:

Museum, Taranto

Elegant

women

on the nape of the


neck, then swathed in bands; or else it would be fixed
in a great chignon supported by a band that passed
round the forehead; or it could be gathered on the
nape of the neck and held in place by a narrow band.

bronze bands

ceremony

hair

in a

small net

simple style without any band

left

the hair in a pad

on the forehead and temples, flowing in loose locks


at the back. Another variation was a great knot at
the top of the head, with the hair combed up and
arranged in

figurines hair

cascade of curls. In the small Tanagra


is

gathered into

chignon and then

divided with a parting into soft waves.

as

used spirals of gold, or silver or

ornaments

false pieces vt hair

were

in their hair.

also

Wigs and

known, which

phanes and Lucian derisively called

'false

Aristoheads',

'helmets', or 'bags of hair'. In ancient times hair also

had

religious significance.

virgins

goddesses. Berenice

offered
is

During the marriage

lock

oi

hair

to

the

supposed to have sacrificed

her luxuriant blonde hair

as

an offering, to ensure her

husband's safe return from the wars.

Men

also

took great care of

elegantly and adorning


at first

it

with

their hair, dressing


trinkets.

very complicated, with curls like

it

lair styles.

crown

all

Details

showing Greek

National

Museum,

Museum

Head of Kouros.
Head of a youth.
Athens. Right: Head of a

hair styles. Left:

Athens. Centre:

of the Acropolis,
horseman, 'the Rampin head', found on the Athenian
Acropolis. Louvre. Below: Archaic Greek bas-relief

plaits bound around the head,


became very simple, with the hair caught up in
a tie, which was sometimes made of metal. In Athens,
young men would cut their hair ceremonially as an
offering to Hercules. From then onwards the epheboi
wore their hair short, jutting over their forehead and

round the forehead, or

later

over the nape of the neck,


hyacinths'. Adults also

wore

like

'bed of curly

their hair short, cut in

example the kepos, cut like a


garden; the Hectorean style, with the hair combed
backwards into curls the Theseid cut, with hair worn
short on the forehead and worn long at the back of
the neck; in locks, which was considered rather
effeminate; or with a circular cut like that of monks.
different styles: for

To
into a
a

balance the hair

rounded or

false

style,

the beard could be cut

a pointed shape, or

it

could also be

The beard had a symbolic meaning:


would wear it short; the Epicureans would

one.

historians

wear it long, to match their long curly hair the Stoics


would go unshaven. After the victory at Marathon
;

Greek men began

to cut their hair; after the reign

Alexander the Great they shaved


moustaches with razors shaped

their beards

like sickles, so that

they could not be seized by their beard in

The Greeks were


Blonde

hair

was

men and women


water, washed

and dried

To
oils,

it

much admired

rarity,

and both

with infusions of yellow flowers,

in the sun, to
a

make

it

lighter in colour.

sheen they used pomades and

scented with floral essences: rose


island

battle.

largely a dark-haired people.

bleached their hair with potash

give their hair

from the
36

it

of

and

oil

amaricium,

of Cos, or an extract of elder and

Details of chiton

and sleeves of the goddesses Aphrodite and Artemis. Eastern

frieze

of the Siphnian Treasury. Marble.

Museum, Delphi
marjoram. These

oils

and pomades were not only

used in Greece, but were also exported to various


countries throughout the

known

times

air

in the

but various kinds of headgear were some-

worn:

also be

worn under

the helmet; the

of the distinguished) with

brim turned upwards or downwards, and

world.

Greek men often went about bare-headed


open

which could

petasos (the prerogative

the pilos, a skull cap without a brim.

tailing

by
it

on one

ear,

flap

which was fastened round the neck


down the back; on festive da\

ribbon, hanging

was embellished with several brightly-coloured

37

Details

showing

Head in
Museum,

different styles

terracotta,

of headgear. Above

possibly of Persephone.

left:

National

Syracuse. Above centre: Hermes. Terracotta

from Boetia. Louvre. Above right: Terracotta statuette


from Tanagra. Louvre. Centre left: Horseman. Interior
of cup (now destroyed). Pinakothek, Munich. Centre
right:

Seated figure.

streamers.

Rhodes

The Greek

brim,

cone with

bonnet, an elongated truncated cone

imported from Egypt),

a small

(this last

pagoda shape (perhaps


introduced bv Alexander the Great after his cam38

men and women, were very fond of


much so that Socrates bitterly criticised
excessive use that men made of them. Women

Greeks, both

perfumes, so
the

were often quite immoderately made up. A


lover protested: 'If you go out m summertime two
black rivulets descend from your eyes; sweat produces red streaks on your cheeks and neck and when
your hair touches your face it gets all dirty with white
also

hat could also have other

shapes, such as a truncated cone, a

paign in the Far East), and the Phrygian bonnets.

paint.'

But

women

these reproaches

went unheeded! Most

continued to use depilatories, to spread

Athenian plate from Volci. Sixth century

creams and

oils

on

their skin,

B.C. British

and to spray themselves

with essences of mint, myrrh, marjoram, thyme.


the advice of Hippocrates,

Museum, London

women would

On

sing at the

top of their voices to develop their bust; but


times they also had recourse to padding.

some-

To look

slimmer they would swathe themselves with tight


bands,

appear

and the brassiere was not unknown.


taller

Greek

they

dress,

would

both for

fix

cork

men and women, was

on the chiton: originally plain

like a

then Huted with pleats and tucks

To

soles to their shoes.

Doric

based

capital,

the Ionic period.

amply draped in the period which created


the ornamented Corinthian capital.
During the Archaic Period the chiton was a simple
woollen tunic, which could be fastened on the left

and

later

shoulder,

leaving

the

right

shoulder

bare,

or

it

would cover both shoulders, and was kept in place


by two clasps. Women wore a wider chiton than that
of the men. and they draped it in a different manner,
according to their personal

sometimes made

false sleeves

created the effect of

taste

and

out of

its

skill.

They

widths, or

blouse with the help of

two
39

Tanagra

40

statuettes

showing the chiton

The chiton was

often draped to

form

false sleeves

Sometimes

a belt

was used

to gather the chiton at the waist

loose fold of the chiton doubled on the

shoulders was also used

as a

hood. Louvre

41

around the waist and around the hips.


Often the surplus material would be doubled on the
belts, fastened

shoulders.

This fold, originally part of the main

garment, in

a later

period became

a separate little

cape, oval or rectangular in shape, with a circular

opening through which the head could

pass.

Men's cloaks were either short garments like the


worn doubled over the shoulders, or else
very full like the himation, which would float freely
chlamys,

with the

movement of the body. The

warriors pre-

only used for winter garments. (Herodotus,


is

the body, the Greeks used

little oval weights sewn


hem. Often the peplum was completely
open on one side. It was quite possible to wear it without a belt, and this gained Spartan women the nick-

inside the

name of 'women who show

New

dress.

considered 'barbaric'.

Solon's severe

fashion set

by

Alcibiades.

and clothes became ever more elaborate during

this

The chiton was transformed into the peplum,


long piece of woollen material like a gown. On

period.
a

Greek vases they were depicted like a cylindrical


petticoat formed by a rectangle of material sewn
down one side. The upper part was folded over the
rest,

so

that

shoulders,

the

gown

where two

reached only up to the

clasps passing

through four

thicknesses of material fastened the front and back of


the

gown

together. In this

way

the top half of the

garment had three openings: two


one

for the head.

The

for the

arms and

folded material formed

two

layers that covered the breast.

Towards

the end of the Archaic Period (between

550 and 480 B.C.) the Ionic influence began to make


itself felt, and linen took the place of wool, which was

4-

and

and almost transparent


were woven with these. Embroidery made its
appearance, but was later abandoned because it was
linen, cotton

silk,

labrics

leather to

sumptuary laws went unheeded,

cam-

unknown, were mixed

fibres, hitherto

pleated loincloth originally in white, later in red,


a

During the

paign in India, Eastern influences were seen in Greek

with

purple or violet,

their hips'.

Hellenic period, after Alexander the Great's

on the
border, which they wore over a completely naked
body. More modest people would wear a brief,
ferred a short cloak, with geometric patterns

as usual,

our source here.) In order to make the dress cling to

show

Women wore sandals of purple

off their naked feet.

Men

boots, short or long, of black leather,

preferred

which they

would

take off before going into their homes.


As time passed the lives of the Greeks became more
and more luxurious. Men and women covered themselves in jewels to
riches,

economic

position.

with gold and


trinkets,

ankles,

show

Men

newly acquired

silver heads.

collected walking sticks

Women were laden with

and wore jewelled ribbons around

and on

their thighs,

worn. Laws were created


ful living: for instance,

take

off their

or to deceive their neighbours as to their

more than

where

later garters

their

were

to put a stop to such waste-

women were

forbidden to

three dresses on their journeys, but

were rarely observed. In fact peplums


became richer and richer, and more and more heavily
draped and pleated, in anticipation of some of the
these laws

fashions of

modern

times.

Onyx cameo with the heads of the Emperors Claudius


and Germanicus and their wives. First century. Nelson
Gallery, Kansas City

The
Etruscans and

Romans

i?
s

Theopompus, a fourth century Roman writer of


comedy, described the Etruscans as effeminate and
licentious men. The women were no better; they

ambitious

were very vain of

and wanted

unbecoming
torians

and did not think

their bodies

to appear

naked

and writers, however,

Apamea, Diodorus
time, and

Siculus,

Other

in public.

his-

Posidonius of

like

who

it

lived in Caesar's

even Virgil, recognised that Etruscans were

courageous and gifted people. But there must have

down to
who appre-

been some truth in the description handed


us

by Theopompus, because even those

ciated the qualities

of the Etruscans could not help

women who made

Tanaquilla, an aristocrat,

of

Greek refugee. As she was very ambitious


to improve her social position after her

a rich

mesalliance,

would be

city,

which

replaced

it.

women,

quinius Priscus,

albeit

discreetly

name was

kind of matriarchy. Their family

own name; whereas a


Roman woman was known as a Claudia or a
Cornelia, Etruscan women retained their own peralways preceded by their

name: Ramtha, Tanaquil or Velia.


Greek and Roman women remained in their homes
for most of their lives, and were content to influence
their men by exercising their tact, to manage their
slaves, and to distribute the family's goods
which
were, however, purchased in the market by the
sonal

lather or the husband. Etruscan

hand,

women, on the

would venture out without blushing

noted) at being exposed to male glances.

It

hillsides,

husband, gave Tanaquilla, superstitious

intellectuals.

and they practised

At the gates

time was an agglomeration


an eagle

This omen, which had frightened her

Lucumon,

lute authority,

she thought he

snatched the hat from Lucumon's head, and then

and the often obscene obesity of their musicians and


Etruscan society had almost abso-

at that

of villages scattered over seven

Etruscan

in

Rome, where

certain to achieve distinction.

noting the shameless behaviour of their courtesans

The women

persuaded her husband to leave

she

Tarquinia and go to

of the

mark in society.
married Lucumon, the son
their

Roman

after

'great

and high hopes'.

changing

became

his

name

as

were

And

all

indeed

to Lucius

Tar-

the founder of a family of

kings.

Urgulania, through her friendship with Livia, wife

of Emperor Augustus, attained

a position

which

'put

her above the law'. She was the wife of Plautius, and
she succeeded in having her son

M.

Plautius Sylvanus

Figures wearing typical Etruscan dress in a frieze

from

Cerveteri. Louvre

li.itiilkllri

other

(as

Livy

was the

privilege of ladies, as well as of courtesans, to take

on couches in the triclinium


alongside the men. This privilege was denied to
Greek women during family meals they sat modestly
part at banquets, reclining

behind the master of the house, ready to get up to


serve him. Etruscan

women

were

also free to attend

and from

dances, concerts or athletic contests,


places in a special stand they
races

and boxing

would

their

often preside at

contests.

Another female privilege was

to

occupy the most

important place in the family tomb,

sarcophagus

placed to the right of the funeral bed reserved for the

husband.

The

chattels

amphoras for wine,


great eaters

found

silver

in

tableware

the

tomb

(great

Etruscans were

and drinkers, and were concerned that

they should be well provided for even in the next

almost

always had the

name of

life)

the proprietress

engraved on them: Larthia, or Vetusia.

Women's

privileged position originated in the Etruscan cult


of the

We

worship of Mother Earth.


find in Etruscan history quite a

Left: Woman's head showing Etruscan hair


phagus from Cerveteri

number of
style.

San

o-

43

Procession of

4"

wearing cloaks. Etruscan Fresco. National Museum, Naples

47

temperaments: the one violent, the other submissive.


According to legend, their husbands, sons of Tarquinius Priscus, had similarly contrasting tempera-

ments, but each failed to choose the

matched

his

own

character.

The two good

marriages were murdered

in these

woman who
partners

at the instigation

of Tullia major, so that the two violent ones were


able to

marry and ensure

that Lucius Tarquinius,

the future Tarquin the Proud, inherited the royal

crown.

The Etruscan Wardrobe


Notwithstanding

women paid
the

their masculine character, Etruscan

great attention to their attire, as did also

men. In general they followed the Greek

fashion,

but during the Archaic Period they adopted very


different styles: long
dresses,

worn with

bright
circles

and sumptuous tight-waisted

heavy jacket

in brilliant colours

red or pinky-orange covered with

and

crosses

full,

bell-shaped skirts with hori-

zontal bands under the waist and around the


that

little

hem

echoed the colours of the bodice; much em-

broidery and

kimono

sleeves that

made

the shoulders

look broader and the waist more slender.


Dancer. End of sixth century, B.C.

Museum

of Fine Arts,

Boston
elected consul. She intrigued to obtain favours for her

numerous

relations,

and even managed to get one of

her granddaughters married to the Emperor Claudius.


Tullia

major and Tulha minor, daughters ot

Servius Tullius,

Gold
eum,

4*

They used

materials of every kind and colour,

were made wider


the new fashions were

pleated, gathered, stiffened; skirts

trinket

Rome

were two

sisters

with very different

from Prenesto. Etruscan-Gregorian Mus-

and

fuller

with hoops. All

women. When

they

wearing the chiton, often of the same

vi\ id

quickly adopted by elegant


started

pinky-orange and embroidered with small flowers,


they covered

it

with

a great scarlet cloak,

with blue

Below left: Etruscan jewels. Fourth century, B.C. Museum


of Tarquinia. Below right: Cosmetic pots. Museum of
Tarquinia

lapels that

hung down

in front like the

a pelerine.

As

were concerned, though they

far as hats

had the pyramid-shaped

long ends ot

general they pre-

tutulus, in

Head coverings were


go out
generally worn by warriors, and also the peasants,
and were of varying shapes.
Rather than a cloak, men preferred to wear a
brightly-coloured scarf, which might be orange, pale
green or royal blue, with a wide embroidered border
hatless.

to

ferred

both inside and outside in

a contrasting

colour

brown saw-teeth
The lacerna was
cloak,
almost
always
made of wool,
type
of
another
short and narrow, worn as an outer garment. The
yellow or blue, pale yellow with

or white with red dots.

motif,

from which originated the Roman toga, was


worn only by the king
a
and the more powerful citizens. At first it was very
short, and was worn over a white embroidered tunic
hemmed in red; later it became knee-length, and
finally full-length; it was either purple, black (for
tebenna,

cloak of small dimensions,

funeral ceremonies) or white.

On

men and women wore

their feet Etruscan

slippers

of red, green or brown cloth, open

in front,

and high and pointed behind the ankle, which were


obviously Eastern in origin. Also fashionable were
boots which were open in front and fastened with

round the ankle; they


coming up to mid-calf, and

straps

with crossed
If the

way

also

wore small boots

light sandals fastened

straps.

Etruscan temperament was reflected in the

they dressed their hair, one would have to con-

clude that they were a very changeable people, as


their hair-styles

underwent frequent transformations.

Women usually bleached their hair, and then adorned


spirals

and pins capped with

bone, ivory or precious metals.

They had corkscrew

it

with bronze or golden

curls

which formed

cap over the temples and

a skull

forehead; long plaits either hanging to the shoulders


or else

wrapped

like the hat

in a tutulus, that

is

pyramid shape

of the same name. The hair was also worn

gathered into a net on the nape of the neck, with curls


on the forehead and over the ears; or enclosed in a

would touch

sheath that

the

ground behind the back,

while the cheeks were surrounded by puffed up

Very fashionable was

locks.
style,

with

down

'wind-swept' hair

parting in the middle and the hair

waved

each side of the face.

women loved jewellery as passionately as


Roman women did. Their coffers over-

Etruscan

Greek or

flowed with brooches and


necklaces

and

earrings.

Funerary statue of

century, B.C. National

clasps, rings

and

bracelets,

The workmanship was

warrior from Capestrano. Sixth

Museum,

Chieti

Roman

and Fashion

Life

Roman women and men loved to adorn themselves


heavily with jewellery. Roman taste turned from the
Etruscan influence towards oriental jewellery, which

was

richer and

more

At first jewels were


were used for personal

elaborate.

offered to the gods, but later

adornment. According to Pliny,

was an
the

who like Herodotus

excellent observer of contemporary fashions,


oriental stones

first

were imported

into

Rome

at

the time of Silius, and immediately caused a sensation.

used

Diamonds were highly valued, but not much


the art of cutting them was unknown. The

as

gem most commonly

popular of all were certainly


for

was the emerald, but

in use

popular were aquamarines and opals. The most

also

embroidering

pearls,

used in earrings,

and for decorating foot-

fabrics,

wear, which consisted almost invariably of white

The largest pearls were used for neckand earrings, of which some were known as

leather sandals.
laces

Roman jewels from

a mosaic. Piazza

Armerina,

Sicilv

crotali:

each
superb, and certain of their techniques are

known

today, such as their

way

surface of a jewel with a fine gold

still

un-

of sprinkling the

powder (thousands

of miscroscopic gold grains) and attaching these to

were double pendants with

these

tip,

mounted

prettily at

way

a pearl at

that they tinkled

every movement. Solid gold bracelets

shaped like snakes, fibulae and brooches were also


decorated with pearls.

The

value of the jewel was

was

increased if the history of the previous owners

the jewel with a solder

known

discover. Jewels

magic power, such

whose secret we have yet to


were enriched with small engravings

in such a

some
power of prolonging life,

or if they were supposed to possess


as the

important, some of them masterpieces of the

craft.

good health, or prolonging youth.


Emperors and their wives made lavish use ot
precious stones. Diocletian was supposed to have

Very long (sometimes

often

offered his foot to his subjects to kiss, so that he

of animals, from the lion to the duck,


floral

volutes,

arabesques.

as

Earrings

long

little

were always

as three inches),

fashioned like a snake with a

heads,

human

head, they

dangled against the cheek and reached to the shoulder.

preserving

could show off

Kunsthistorisches

Museum, Vienna

decorated with precious

Anthony amazed even Cleopatra, who was


by no means unsophisticated, when he presented
stones.

himself to

Onyx cameo with Roman eagle. End of first century, a.d.

his sandals

her

in

purple tunic covered with

emeralds, pearls and opals. Caligula had the

and the

tail

brilliant

stones.

of

his

favourite horse

Antonia, the

plaited

widow

mane
with

of Drusus,

fastened jewels to the exotic fish in her aquarium, so


that their darting

movements were emphasised.

Rings were the most popular form of jewellery.

worn on each finger, covering


the knuckles, but the middle
and
up the lower joint
finger was left bare for superstitious reasons. Rings
Several of them were

were worn even on the

toes.

have been extremely heavy,


in size,

as

Many

of them must

they were enormous

with very big stones and decorative

settings,

but there was a distinction between rings worn in the


summer, which were lighter, and the heavier winter
ones. The simplest of all rings was the engagement
Right Portrait of a
:

Florence

50

Roman lady. Archaeological Museum.

ring,

which the bridegroom placed on the ring finger


it was believed that from this
finger a special nerve led directly to the heart. It was
a simple iron circle, often covered in gold, and its

next to the naked body;

of

sleeved and sometimes held in place

value was entirely symbolic.

wider than the tunic, but with shorter

his future bride, as

The

dress

of

a simple toga,

Roman women

in early times

very like the one that

men

was

wore. This

was cut out of a rectangle of material, six to seven


yards long and two and a half yards wide, its corners
trimmed to form a round or oval shape; the garment
was then folded to about a third of its width, and
swathed around the arms and body. As time passed,
women left the wearing of the toga to men, and
followed the Greek fashion, modifying it to their

own

taste.

A tunic made out of wool, cotton or silk, was worn

zona, a

this

band worn under the

function

The

as a brassiere.

by one or two

pulled in

was very
by

belts.

The

double rectangle which

fell

down

The

long robe cut

and narrow rectangular piece used

short-

had the same

breasts,
stola,

full,

a belt.

sleeves,

was

was

long

as a scarf,

or a

palla

over the chest and

on the shoulders by

seam or by a
fibula. This large number of garments was very
necessary, especially in winter, as the climate was
back, fastened

much
often

less

mild than in Greece. Several tunics were

worn

together

when

it

was very

cold.

There were no hats for matrons, but only

veils

which could be arranged in different ways but


always fall on the shoulders in soft folds. Roman

Above: Detail showing Roman togas, from the Ara Pacis


Vatican Museum, Rome

Left: Detail

painting

National

52

showing robe worn by Roman

transferred

to

Museum, Naples

panel

(from

actor. WallHerculaneum).

women

sump-

dressed according to the occasion,

embroidery for victorious captains;

tuously for banquets and religious ceremonies, in

a transparent fabric,

embroidered robes with great bands of colour;

palmata,

soberly for journeys, in purple tunics that

show

or scantily,

or creases;

stains

would not
physical

for

would wear a simple


movements free, and revealed

exercise and sport: for this they


bikini,

which

the

left

the graceful body.

Roman woman was


proud of being the domina in her own home and the
regina of her husband's clients who crowded into his
In the Classical Period, the

office,

but she always remained confined to her

embroidered

victorious dux.

And

uitrea,

made of

popular with effeminate men;


in

gold palm leaves for the

then there were the purple

bands which passed over the shoulders, crossing the


full

length of the tunic, the distinctive dress of

senators and aristocrats.

Both men and women had a passion for the


which were public baths where one would
go daily for hygienic purposes, and also to conclude
business deals, arrange marriages, and spread gossip.
They were open in the morning for women and in
thermae,

men. One writer of

time

gynaeceum, very busy with her spinning, weaving,

the afternoon for

and organising of the preparation and storage of

advised matrons that they should always be accom-

showing

to

life,

nor did she share

of her husband. But

emancipate

woman. At
ally

as

necessary,

and

proverbial parsimony. She did not partici-

pate in public
life

them

distributing

provisions,

as

time went by, she began

herself, particularly if she

age,

was

a rich

and her husband had no claim on

her personal possessions, nor did he benefit

from her

income. Her estate could not be touched even in the


event of her husband's bankruptcy, and Augustus

and Claudius made laws to prevent wives from

becoming guarantors for their husbands.


Very many satirists aimed their barbs

at

rich

women: 'A woman thinks she can do as she pleases,


and nothing will make her blush, when she is wearing
an emerald necklace, and large pearls are stretching
her ear-lobes.' 'Nothing

is

more

insufferable than a

woman.' 'Why does Censennia's husband remain silent? Because she brought him a million
rich

sesterces.

He

paid to extol her chastity.'

is

Many

marriages were purely formal, unions between rich

women

men

and poor

designed only

as

evasions of

the celibacy law.

Men were

preoccupied with the accumulation of

wealth and the conquest of


turn

they

were very

fastidious

wore only

new

lands,

about their

and

dress.

in their

At home

short-sleeved simple tunic, but

when they were conducting their business or attended any festivity, when they celebrated victory or
honoured the gods, they would wear a long tunic,
made of wool or cotton or silk, often interwoven
with gold and silver threads, and decorated with

embroidery, over which they would

The colour of

the toga

fling their toga.

was symbolic of rank pure


who were candidates for
:

white or Candida for those

public office; praetexta with purple bands for priests,


magistrates,

and the sons of freemen

of age (that

is

taces

for the

when
first

they shaved the

time); picta,

female slave to carry

all

unguents, which were often kept in

their oils

a glass ball

and
with

officially in the

the time of her marriage she automatic-

came of

panied by

this

until they

came

down on

their

purple with gold

Girl

dressed

Armerina,

for

Sicily

gymnastics.

Roman

mosaic.

Piazza

Roman matron

having her hair dressed. Bas-relief.

Statuary showing feminine hair

Previous pages:

Togas worn by

styles, in the

Museum

of Trevin

time of Imperial

Roman women. Pompeian

Rome

fresco.

National

Museum, Naples

rope handle that could be hung over the arm.

The bath was taken

in four stages,

preceded by

physical exercises chosen according to the age,

mood

of the individual. Running,

lifting

and physical

fitness

dumb-bells and playing with hoops were particularly

recommended. After

this

one sweated

in the

much

hotter

sudatorium,

and then moved to the very

calidarium.

that the

brief rest in the tepidarium followed, so

body was not subjected

to too great a shock

from the frigidarium, the icy cold baths. During all


was expected to massage,

these stages, the female slave

rub and currycomb the body of her mistress; curry-

combs were made of ivory or bone


and of iron, copper or

The very

silver for

for delicate skins,

tougher hides.

refined ladies of the time of the

Empire were

quite different

women who

from

Roman

their ancestors, the

lived in the Archaic and Republican

Ovid wrote: 'Perhaps under the reign of


the Sabine women were more concerned with

periods.

Tatius

tending their husbands' estates than with themselves.


In those

days the ruddy-faced matron

ably on a high

sat

uncomfort-

chair, spinning endlessly

looked after her

many heavy

tasks;

while she

was she who

it

penned the sheep that her daughter had taken out to


graze in the fields; she

wood

and chopped

who

kept alive with faggots

the fire in the hearth.

But your

mothers have given birth to delicate daughters; you


have to dress in golden brocade; you have to continually

change your elegantly perfumed hair

styles,

and to show-off the glittering stones on your hands.

Your neck

hung with

is

heavy and rich that you can hardly bear

the orient, so

weight of them. But

the

to scold

you

for the care

sidering that so
their

own

add to

we

are hardly in a position

you take

many men

take as

to please us, con-

much trouble

Plotina, wife of Hadrian. National

Museum, Naples

over

appearance. Husbands follow the fashions

and the bride can hardly find anything

of their wives,

to

have come from

pearls that

this

extravagance.'

At the time of the Empire

Roman women had


how to read

great aspirations to culture: they learnt

and write; they studied Greek and voguishly intro-

Julia

daughter of Titus.

Capitoline

duced foreign words into conversation; they were


taught

how

to spin

wool and

to sew.

Though

Museum,

Rome

the

Romans had little talent for music and dancing, girls


were taught singing because 'if a woman wants to
must know how to hold the viol in her
hand and the bow in her right'. As well they

please, she
left

took dancing lessons; simple and pretty rhythmic

movements of arms and


formed

to the

torso

were gracefully per-

sound of music.

Some Roman women were so


tic

that

cultured and pedan-

Juvenal complained: 'There

boring than

women who,

as

soon

is

as

nothing more
they

sit

down
51

table,

at

praising

start

Dido's

justifying

Virgil,

drawing parallels between poets, comparing


Virgil with Homer.' They were familiar with the
death,

work of Horace, and devoured the texts of Ovid who


was nicknamed 'the women's writer', as well as
Propertius and Tibullus,

young

who were forbidden to very

because they were considered too daring.

girls

Novels sold

hot cakes, particularly the Milesian

like

Fables, a collection of salacious stories originating in

town in Asia Minor, which had

Miletus, a

honour

the

of supplying the harems of the oriental kings.

Women

were interested

phers,

had

their

own

and were knowledgeable

Many

personal philoso-

about astrology

also

and mathematics. Poppea was accompanied on her

by

travels

was

so-called 'mathematicians'

to predict her future. Livia,

responsible for any

whose function
she was left a

when

widow by Drusus, was comforted by the philosopher

harm

Even during their journeys women did not neglect


which was meticulous and very time-

consuming. They used face packs, which often had


a pestilential stink
fat

competed among themselves


their slaves, and the

luxury of their dress and home, but also over the

size

libraries. Most books were in the


form of scrolls, the codex or bound book being un-

and quality of their

usual until a considerably later period.

The

scrolls

were kept in large cases of cedar wood, which were


usually part of the luggage taken on the various
journeys, long or short, that Roman women made,
on holiday or when they followed
husbands on their expeditions.

either

A woman

of

from her home

a certain social status did

unless she

haps her

who

cicisbeo,

administered her

and

estate,

and per-

load of luggage that

would

ensure her every comfort, including gold and silver


tableware,

and

curtains,

that

all

to trail five

precious materials,

Poppea used
around after
donkeys
hundred female

her, using their

Women

furniture,

was needed

for her toilet.

milk for her daily bath.

'Poppean

and honey, to

shining whiteness';

'a

broad beans, white lead

lupins,

and

paint, red nitrate,

guano, perfumed myrrh, tree

orris root, kingfisher

honey, dried rose

sap,

gum

twelve narcissus bulbs,

give the complexion

of ammonia and

petals, salts

barley infusions to eliminate pimples.

After she had attended to the removal of superfluous hair and applied her cosmetics, the fashionable

Roman woman concentrated on


Roman women made great use
blonde

sans.

'like the Bretons',

red or

colours were used only by courte-

as these

The

dressing her hair.

of hair dyes, and

Germans', but never brassy yellow

'like the

delicate operation of dressing the hair

always performed by

a skilled slave,

was

who might

be

scolded, punished, slapped, and tortured or jabbed

with pins

if a

lock was out of place or the parting was

not perfect.

Hair

styles

underwent numerous transformations.

According to Ovid
the acorns

'.
.

on an oak

number of hair

He

would be

it

styles

easier to

Hyblaean

tree, the

wild animals that live

every day.'

move

crowd
Always present was

were attended by

of servants, slaves and friends.


her procurator,

not

their

(a

which after a few hours became rancid. Ovid


advised barley, vetch, ten eggs, powdered stag's

or blue,

number of

milk

in

recipe'),

affected manner.'

Aristocratic ladies

made of sheep

because they were

and breadcrumbs soaked

coloured their hair black

not only over the

to their clients

their toilet,

Minor wrote
her memoirs, and Augustus Caesar warned her,
'Take care lest you should write and speak in an
Areus, her husband's friend. Agrippina

came

that

during their stay in the hotel.

antler,

and

in philosophy,

philosophic treatise was dedicated to Octavia.


influential ladies

passed that protected travellers and held hotel-keepers

in the Alps,

count

bees, or the

than the infinite

and new fashions that appear

woman

advised every

hair style to suit her face:

'.

to choose her

long face requires a

parting on the forehead; a light knot at the top of


is more suitable
Ovid was exaggerating, it is

the head, leaving the ears uncovered,


for

round

Even

faces.'

if

quite true that fashion in hair styles did change continuously, so

much

so that sculptors

commissioned

were forced to make a special


which would be fitted to the
head every time the fashion changed. However, it is
possible to distinguish three main hair styles: the
to carve portraits

marble wig of the

hair,

which were

sober style of Octavia, the simple curls of Agrippina

much

more comfortable than the ordinary convey-

ances.

During

Major and the very complicated style of Messalina.


The chief ornaments were tortoise-shell combs and
large hairpins, often hollow so they could hold per-

usually travelled in

halts

they would

litters,

rest in their tents,

perhaps in the houses of friends or of public


or in hotels.

'Good

hotels,

service, baths

Capital',

infested

.^

But

or

officials,

though they advertised

and comforts

like those ot the

were often disreputable places and always


by fleas. It became necessary for a law to be

One of the most attractive head


band of pearls, worn Byzantinewhich was decorated more and more heavily,

fumes or poisons.
ornaments was
fashion,
until

it

became

diadem.

The

Detail of panel with St Urs'ila. Twelfth century.


of Catalan Art, Barcelon..

Middle Ages

Museum

am

'

The Byzantine Influence

palla (mantle),

The essence of the Byzantine age is contained in the


name of a single woman: Theodora. Daughter of
Acacius, a bear-feeder of the amphitheatre at Constantinople, she was extremely beautiful, and while
still offender years became a well-known courtesan.
She acquired fame as 'the naked dancer of Subura',
but escaped from this quarter of the city when
Hecebolus, governor of Pentapolis in North Africa,
She accompanied him to
fell in love with her.

She also wore

On

and gems.

Theodora

travelled

through the

cities

and

of Asia Minor

back to Constantinople. Here she returned to her


licentious habits, until Justinian

became

fascinated

gold

fine gold threads.

covered with pearls

collar,

her head she carried a heavy diadem

of gold and pearls with cascades of pearls and

down

emeralds reaching
a

to her breast.

necklace of large pearls

She

also

wore

with rubies

set alternately

and emeralds.
She was dressed

like a goddess,

but she

knew

the refinements of the art of entertaining. She


offer

Greek and

all

would

wines to her guests; with

Italian

from Lebanon, Falernian wine sweetened with Hymettus honey and Cos
wine mixed with sea water. One of the subtle dishes
which was served at her table was a roast peacock
which had been fed with opium, according to an
dessert she

Pentapolis, but having quarrelled they parted,

interwoven with

would

serve wine

by her strong personality.

Very

Indian custom.
intelligent

woman

and ambitious,

'most beautiful
If the

won

of Byzantium'

this

the love of Justinian,

nephew of the Emperor Justin and heir-presumptive


to the throne.

Roman law

and

a patrician

forbade marriage between

a courtesan,

have

to persuade her lover to

managed
law repealed. At

but Theodora
this

ion, she

was

gifted with an imperious personality

and

embroidered and covered with


embroidered

in

humble

origins and free

skill.

life,

Notwithstanding

she reigned as a true

empress over her loyal subjects.

Within her palace was found every luxury that was


produced in Constantinople or that could be procured from foreign lands silver columns, curtains of

silk

then

second

huge cloak covered

gold and precious stones, with

magnificent claims (band).

On

his

head he wore

a
a

splendid diadem, and his hair was cut short over the

forehead but

left

long

at the

nape of the neck.

Beauty contests are reputed


this

her

pearls,

tunic with a border of gold; a

great natural cunning, and used her influence over

her husband with sagacity and

Emperor

more than shared her enthusiasm. Over purple

the age of

but perfectly proportioned, with a delicate complex-

luxuries, the

hose he wore a full-length Byzantine tunic, richly

this,

twenty-one she married Justinian, and at


the age of twenty-seven she became Empress. Small

Empress was fond of

to

have originated

at

time introduced by another Empress Theodosia,


:

with the consent of her husband Basil


suitable wife for her son

Empire. The winner was

framed by

sought

Leo by gathering together in

her palace the twelve most beautiful

features

II,

a girl

girls

in

the

of sixteen, her perfect

helmet of hair

in

which was

purple (the technique of purple dye was a secret


jealously guarded

by the Imperial manufacturers),

Chinese scent burners,

silver tables encrusted

entwined

double strand of pearls.

As early as the year 441, the Empress Pulcheria had


looked for a bride for her brother, Prince Theodosius,

with

mother-of-pearl and ivory, precious mosaics in


which gold predominated, marble floors and gardens
with marble paving stones, where enormous bronze
dragons watched over ibis, peacocks and pheasants,
and where fountains jetted cascades of scented water.
Her throne was of solid gold, encrusted with pre.

cious stones, with purple cushions that

School of Cassino. Twelfth century. Detail of fresco of


St Angelo in Formis, Capua

matched her

footwear. Her coach, gold-plated, was pulled by four

white horses; her


long,

tight

always

sleeves

made of

broideries,

metrical

dresses, cut

and

silk,

patterns

of

Left:

modest neckline, were

em-

enriched by splendid

which repeated

adorned with precious


tunic, the

very austerely with

typically Eastern geo-

stylised

stones.

Empress wore the

The Emperor Arcadius.

flowers,

Over

stole,

Istanbul

and

were

the Byzantine

and over

it

the

Museum
61

Mourners. Detail of scene on


Catalan Art, Barcelona

side

of sarcophagus. About 1300. From the Church of Mahaud. Burgos

Museum

of

63

a group of girls one more beautiful than the


But her plans did not succeed because in the
meantime, while the candidates were collecting in
the palace, Theodosius had fallen in love with a

amongst
other.

remarkable

girl

her. In 788 the

to a

of twenty, Athenais, and had married

Empress

Irene, too,

had had recourse

beauty contest to find a wife for her son Con-

stantine.

Messengers were sent throughout the whole

crowd of beauties.
The prize of Constantine's hand went to Maria
Dilumnia. Unfortunately the union was not a happy
one, as after a few years the Emperor, to the great
of the Empire, and they collected

scandal of Christendom, repudiated his wife and

married one of his mother's ladies-in-waiting.

Byzantine

women took

great care of their beauty,

and used pomades and cosmetics of every kind. The

Empress Zoe had brought

to her

all

slim,

and her remedies were so

appeared to be a mere thirty

more than
that she

from Ethiopia and


young and

the products she needed to keep

India

fifty, so

successful that she

when

she

was already

that her contemporaries believed

had managed to discover the

secret

of eternal

youth. In any case, the beautiful Zoe, in order to

Hunting

From

mosaic

the

Villa

Imperiale, Piazza Armerina, Sicily. Below: Detail

from

Right:

scene.

in

a group of Virgins in the Church of Sant' Apollinare


Nuovo, Ravenna. Below right: Frederick II. Miniature
from Tractatus de Arte Venandi cum Avibus. Thirteenth

century

"4

protect her skin, hardly ever

believing that fresh air

went out of her

palace,

was harmful.

The son of Pepin and Bertrada was Charlemagne,


born

in

742 he proved an exceptional emperor, and


witnessed a revival of arts and letters and
;

his reign

On ceremonial occa-

an increased interest in fashion.


sions he

The Early Middle Ages

his

Byzantine fashion spread throughout the world, and


influenced the styles of the early
pearl

Middle Ages. The

diadems became lower and heavier, but were

always encrusted with precious stones. Jewellery

became

increasingly massive, and often included gold

The

became popular, though they were already known to the Egyptians, who used them to cool the air, and to the
Chinese, who used them to drive away flics.
Thcodolinda, the Lombard queen, had a fan which
became famous; made with pleated parchment all
and

silver crosses.

round,

it

had

ivory. She

use of fans also

handle and

wore

it

sheath of finely carved

dangling from her

belt, as

was

then the fashion.

Men wore

their hair longer,

either clean-shaven or

and the face was

adorned with

Women never cut their hair,

as their

a short

long

beard.

plaits

were

considered one of the most important attributes of


their beauty.

Bertrada, the future wife of Pepin,

would go about

in

raiment

fastened with a gold clasp, and he


self also

On

with

golden diadem encrusted with stones.

differed

would

from the
dress

dress of the

common

very simply, and

his

womenfolk

His

The Empress

Irene. St Sophia, Istanbul

and

four concubines) on the other hand were free to

follow the fashion that prescribed dresses of subtly


patterned

silk;

according

red

or woollen dresses of homespun, dyed


the

to

cinnabar or oak apples.


the

ammonia

and

in urine.

newest

The

techniques,

contained in the droppings of birds

The nightgown was unknown


Ages: people cither slept naked or

the

in

Middle

in their shirts

and

the shift being the feminine version of the

shifts,

shirt,

using

colours were fixed with

the

same garment, but longer.

wealth to possess

number of

It

was

shifts. It is

five,

beheld them.

were not

furs

(he had five legitimate wives

that Gibertina, a Venetian lady,

who

He

people.

ermine, fox, sable or marten, but sheep and rabbit.

but was the proud possessor of two very long plaits,


all

would adorn him-

any other day he hated wearing clothes which

King of France, was not only young and beautiful,

which enchanted

woven of gold,

shoes covered with precious stones, his cloak

owned

as

a sign

of

recorded

many

as

embroidered round the neck and the sleeves

with gold.

John

II

Comnenus.

St Sophia, Istanbul

65

Comb and jewelled coronet belonging to Queen


Theodolinda. Museum of the Basilica of San Giovanni,

Typical medieval
in the

dress.

From

an illuminated manuscript

Marciana Library, Venice

Monza

The Northern

nations

with

their

passion

for

of wealthy people were covered with

a cloth,

hang-

heraldry introduced the fashion of two-coloured

ing in folds, so that guests could w^ipe their hands and

garments: the right half was different from the

mouth on

half,

and charged with heraldic emblems.

wealthy possessed the

crosna,

fur

overcoat.

left

The
At

wedding ceremonies the bridegroom, after the celebration of the vow, w ould offer a crosna to the bride,
who promptly returned it to him as they crossed the
marital threshold, because the garment was used both
by men and women.
One of the main preoccupations for women of the
early Middle Ages was the kitchen, particularly as
meals were abundant. As luxurv increased the tables
T

courses

sweets and

folds.

its

hors

There w^ould be three main

d'oeuvre and soup, meat and game,

fruit.

Not more

than ten to fifteen hors-

d'oeuvre were served, so that the guests' appetite was


not spoiled:

salads, often

of hollyhock and hops,

salt

and pickled pork, and vegetables from the garden.


Soup was highly esteemed, but chicken soup was

eschewed by puritanical people,


have aphrodisiac powers.

was

so

tough

that

it

Much

as it

was thought

to

of the poultry eaten

could only be digested

if

boiled

with sharp-tasting sauces. Considered delicious were


it
cooked without
Goose was very popular, the
geese being fattened with bread soaked in lukewarm
milk for three days before they were killed. Peacocks,
the prince's meat, and swans were considered delicacies. Birds were served each one on a round piece

plovers and

doves, especially

taking out the entrails.

Right: Salome. Mosaic in St Mark's, Venice


fan. Pleated parchment with ivory
of the Basilica of San Giovanni, Monza

Queen Theodolinda's
holder.

66

Museum

Sffifcv;* .?*

?.-' :

of bread, arranged in a pyramid, so that each guest


could take

as

many

as

he liked. Amongst vegetables,

age of twenty-two he lived

At

bachelor.

that age he

fell

as a

virtuous and chaste

in love

with Bertha, the

were
which were considered indigestible and the
cause of nightmares. The condiments most in use
were garlic, onions, parsley, mint, fennel, aniseed and

Count of Blois, and mother of five


wife of Eudes
children. To win her, the king thought it necessary
to declare war on his rival Eudes, however, died of
influenza, the war ended, and the king was able to

coriander.

marry the

beans, broad beans, and peas

eaten, but not

lentils

Queens, princesses and noble


privileges, especially in the

knew

all

and had

Queen Uta, one of

their veils.

the twelve founders of

burg Cathedral, according


sion

make themselves

thousand ways with

would arrange her

many

realm of fashion. They

the artifices necessary to

attractive,

had

ladies

to her

mood

veil in a

Naum-

or the occa-

dramatic fashion

I,

woman

He had

of his choice.

not reckoned, however, with the Pope,

Gregory V, who excommunicated him because he


had married his third cousin. In those times, marriage
between even remote blood relations was considered
incestuous.

went through

Bertha

began to

suffer to

He was

one, like the peasants' style.

look for another wife with no blood

struggles of the age

in

the political

they were used to strengthen

alliances, enlarge fiefs, or satisfy violent passions,


as

those of Robert

II,

such

king of France, the son of Hugh

Capet. At the age of eighteen Robert had been


obliged for political reasons to

marry Rosala,

was thirty-four years older than

he.

He

who

repudiated

her immediately after the marriage, and until the

ties

Robert then married Constance of

was

so busy

the

attachment which

still

whom

pany of troubadours,
her from the South:
trousers,

Castille.

She

between her

existed

who

went from court

originally

shoes.'

The

came from Provence,

and from

castle to castle,

of member of the
Duomo, Ravello

right: Portrait

the pulpit of the

com-

short hair and short

and pointed

to court

in the

she had brought with

'Men with

chins,

hairless

troubadours,

From

to himself.

and self-absorbed that she never noticed

husband and Bertha. She spent her time

Below and

Margaret of Provence. Louvre

of

then told that he must

driven to give her up.

Queens, princesses and noble ladies were, however,

years

such an extent that her husband was

(Byzantine), in a mysterious one (oriental) or a naive

sometimes no more than pawns

five

humiliation and moral anguish, and finally her health

Rufoli family.

69

Scenes from medieval

Library

life in

Heidelberg University
an illumination in the Manesse manuscript. Thirteenth century.

together with musicians


verses

on

who accompanied

the viol or the lute.

their

The troubadours were

messengers oflove, but they also performed the task

of relaying news and gossip.

The patroness of troudabours was Eleanor of


Aquitaine. 'God save Dame Eleanor the Queen, who
is

judge of honour, of spirit and beauty, of generosity

and loyalty,' sang Philippe of Thaun. Eleanor was

woman

of very individual

tastes.

adopt the medieval fashion of

She was the

a dress

with

first

to

a train

and very wide sleeves, often so long that they touched


the

ground

(the use

of

many

yards of material was

supposed to demonstrate the wealth and nobility of

Glove in the Coronation regalia of the Holy Roman


Emperors. Twelfth century. Imperial Treasury, Vienna

Her dresses were made of the compliweave known as samite; her embroideries

the wearer).

cated silk

were picked out

in pearls set in gold; her bandinella

was of linen, and her cloaks were of wool dyed with


indigo; the seams of her clothes
strands of pearls

were concealed by

and she wore the most refined of

Falconer with plumed hat and saddle cloth. Capodilista

Codex, Padua

jewels, veils, and other accessories.

At the age of fourteen, having been


by her

father,

Prince Louis

left

an orphan

William of Aquitaine, Eleanor married

who became

Louis VII of France. She

followed him to the Holy Land during the Second


Crusade,

where she began

to

seriously

consider

divorcing her husband. She returned to France and

71

their

marriage was annulled in

sent.

She was married again,

Anjou, bringing

5 1

by mutual con-

time to Henry of

dowry the immense territories


father. From this event stems the

as a

from her

inherited

1 1

this

between England and France, which shaped


medieval history. Henry, the grandson of William
the Conqueror, succeeded to the English throne in
1 1 54, and Eleanor's dowry became part of the domain

strife

of the crown of England.


In

London

the queen

was

sad, far

away from

the

French landscape and sunshine. She spent her days


spinning wool, playing the viol, and weeping. But
her tears were quenched on the day that she

met

Bernard de Ventadour, the famous troubadour. She


went back with him to France, and with him she set
up the 'Court of Love' where, together with twenty
other ladies, splendidly dressed in cendal
taffeta),

with long

plaits

down

type of

(a

to their waists, she

gravely discussed the 'Code of Love', composed of


thirty-one articles,

bold:

'Love never

marriage
lover

some of which were curious and

is

who

not

nothing to prevent

Left:

house of avarice;

bar against love; the

survives his beloved must

years; the true lover

men, or

in

lives

a legitimate

man

is

mourn

for

woman

Queen Uta. Naumburg Cathedral


a corbel.

is

being loved by two

being loved by two women.'

Below. Detail from

two

always shy; and there

Duomo, Modena

There were discussions on particular problems


such as whether true love can exist between husband
and wife. The answer they arrived
cannot

between

exist

two

at

was

marriage; true lovers give everything to


graciously, without being obliged to

that love

bound

persons

by

one another

do so by the

law: love disappears where husband and wife have


the duty of submitting to each other's will,

and never

refusing each other anything.

The 'Court

ot Love' organised tournaments, in

which heavily armoured knights wearing the colours


of their lady on their helmets took part, mounted on
horses splendidly caparisoned.

At the Court of Love

they discussed the feats of King Arthur, read romances

Roman

like the

ot the valiant

dc la Rose,

the day, like the affair

was

accused

steward,

commented on

the exploits

Orlando, or talked of the scandals ot


of Genevieve ot Brabant,

committing adultery
years younger than

ot

man many

with

who
her

her.

Because of her royal duties. Eleanor was obliged,

however, to go to and tro between London andPoitiers, a city

always dear to her heart, not only

because Bernard de Ventadour lived there, but also

because

was the centre

it

of her territories,

which she

governed with wise firmness. Her relationship with


her husband deteriorated at this time to the point of

When

hatred.

her children rebelled against their

tather in 1173, she

took

their part.

She was made

prisoner by the English, and confined in the castle at

where she

Salisbury,

lived as a prisoner for sixteen

years: Richard, her favourite son, set her tree at the

Henry

death of

II.

After a long career of political

importance. Eleanor,

who

signed herself 'Queen ot

England by the wrath of God", died at the age of


eighty-two and was buried at Fontevrault.

Her story takes place at the time of the great reawakening of mankind which occurred after the year
1000.

Men

and

women

freed themselves

from the

nightmare of disastrous prophecies which had preceded the end of the millennium, and experienced

new hope

for the future.

Arts and crafts flourished again,

and there were

fewer savage incursions into the territory ot neigh-

bouring lords, tewer senseless duels,


little

Castles

were
earth,
of

life

became

milder and hunting was preferred to war.

were

built

installed;

with windows; sanitary services

carpets covered the floors ot hard

which poor people had insulated with b


in winter: walls were enriched by

dead leaves

hanging

St Julia.

centurv.

tapestries.

The Scaligen Tomb. Middle of

the twelfth

Verona

This was the age of superstition. If a bride on her


wedding day crossed the path of a dishevelled

woman,

dog or a blind man, a lame man or


was sure that her marriage would always
be unhappy. It was also a common belief that if a
a

a hare, a

snake, she

made

person

knot

even a
behind the backs of the newly wedded couple,
while reciting the miserere backwards, the marriage
a

in a string, a ribbon, or

hair

would come

to a disastrous end. In order to reverse

the evil spell, the

bridegroom had

out the wedding ceremony, two

to wear,

through-

shirts inside out.

The Age of Chivalry


The age was redeemed by
which, whatever

the institution of chivalry

shortcomings in practice, did

its

up an ideal to be followed.
needed to become a knight
the age often or eleven,

A
:

come

noble youth would,

at

of a

to live at the court

prince or a feudal lord. For about four years he

would

the duties of a page to his lord, and acquire the

fulfil

necessary education:

swimming,

riding,

well

as

set

long preparation was

chess.

as learn
It

he would train

sports

at

archery, fencing and hunting

the art of writing poetry and playing

he distinguished himself in these

would be promoted

to the rank of squire,

arts,

he

and could

follow his feudal lord in battle. At the age of twenty-

one he would be dubbed knight with

solemn

as

it

a ceremony as
was splendid; when Frederick Bar-

barossa had his

such

two

magnificent

sons ordained as knights, he gave


feast that

it

was remembered

for

years to conic.

Knights were clothed in a woollen tunic that came

below the knee, over which they wore a coat ot


made of a network of metal
rings. A heavy sword hung on the left side from a
wide leather belt, with a strap on the right shoulder.

just

mail, a shorter tunic

From

the

century.

altar

of the Church of San Vicenzo. Twelfth

Museum

of Catalan Art. Barcelona.

On the head was worn an iron helmet, in the shape of


a

Physical comfort

became more important,

ally in relation to sleep

especi-

woollen mattresses replaced

During the summer

the heap of leaves

on the

a single mattress,

longer than the body, so that

third

floor.

of it was folded over to form

sufficient

gave

comfort; during the winter the four poster

bed, single or double, was preferred,


slept

a head-rest,

swathed tightly

in sheets

on which people

and blankets. The

pillow might be many-coloured, and the mattress

was always

raised so that the sleeper rested

ably half sitting up.

from the
to drive

~4

ceiling

away

comfort-

A lamp was sometimes suspended

and kept alight

evil spirits.

all

through the night

pointed cupola, or round with

a little

brim. Their

were a long double-edged sword, bow


a heavy iron
knight carried also a shield on which was

chief weapons

and arrows, lances of various types and


club.

depicted the coat of arms of the


allegiance or the

The

fief

to

which he owed

emblems of his beloved.

a profound moral effect


on the age. Besides the strict code of honour which
governed a knight's behaviour, one of his ideals was
to honour and cherish the female sex. In an age when
women counted tor so little that it was believed they
did not possess a soul, and were deprived of any

spirit

of chivalry had

rights over their children (in Frisia, a child


his father at the

who

lost

age of nine was granted emancipation

Above: Andrea Bonaiuti. Detail from Glorie


cani. Santa Maria Novella, Florence

and thus became the guardian of his

dei

Domeni-

own mother)

Above: School of Benedetto Antelami. Detail of figure


representing September in the 'Allegory of the Months'.
Baptistery, Parma. Below: Herbalist. Medieval miniature
from Tacuinwu Sanitatis

in

when women were regarded as chattels (in


Norway husbands could sell their wives to pay their
debts or could give them away to their friends)
knights rendered homage both to noblewomen and
common women, elevating them to the rank of 'lady

doubt

and dame".

ate,

an age

This attitude
the

reflected in the writings

of Abelard.

unhappy lover of Eloise. The Breton philosopher

in his letters
this

is

and essays had always praised

women

way: 'God's kindness, when he prepared

in
his

grandiose plan o{ creation, reserved without any

woman. From the very fact


Adam, we must see man as a
means, woman as an end in herself. Our knights.
today, enfold woman with sweet admiration. Have
a special

place for

that he created her after

women

perhaps changed?

see

exacting. Mid every day

their energies to

new

gam

state ot affairs

come

see

men spending

all

woman's heart. This is a


which shows how advanced and
their

pious our civilisation must be.

"No"

them proud, passion-

to brutality, and to
will be a century

Women, you

have

said

your credit the centurj

to

of sweetness.'
15

The new position of women in society encouraged


them to abandon the uniform and rather monotonous

even if graceful draping of their dresses,

and

to desire greater elegance. This greatly stimulated

trade in cloth, since they


ot

wore an

very

number

increasing

undergarments and outer garments,

of them

all

full.

The most

sought-atter cloth came from Flanders,


was usually scarlet and green with patterns
in squares, circles and dots. Silk was manufactured
in Genoa, Florence and Lucca. Raw materials were
imported into Paris and then finished by spinners
organised into guilds. Oriental motifs were abandoned and replaced by western designs, both religious

and
11

.-T*>

this

and secular
In Italy
at

in character.

women began to wear a second tunic,

the waist and fuller at the

hem, over

tight

long under-

which were narrow where they were


became wide towards the wrist,
glimpse was caught of the under-tunic of a
colour. The neckline was square and deep

tunic. Sleeves

the shoulder,

set into

so that a
different

the skirt, sleeves and neck had borders of coloured


materials, often

the outside.

embroidered bodices were worn on

poet describing the

Sicilian

girl

he

loved wrote: 'With her wiscia [leather bodice embroidered with pearls and other gems], her

veil

and

whoever gazes at her, like a


sun clothed in splendour, crowned by thick darkness
and surrounded by stars.'
Instead of pockets, which were still unknown, both
men and women carried bags which could be hung
on a shoulder strap or else suspended from the belt;
they were either square or rectangular. Men wore a

her jewels she seems, to

short tunic over a longer one, brightly coloured,

made

either

of wool, linen or

many

broidered or striped in
shorter

em-

up the sides to make moveleather belt was worn round the

garment was

heavily

silk

different colours; this

slit

ments

easier.

waist,

adorned with metal studs: the fashion tor

buttons began in the thirteenth century.

The

nether

garments consisted of long knitted stockings which

matched the tunic and were quite often


people fashion prescribed

a tunic

but tight around the hips, and a

with wide short sleeves


collar,

fur-trimmed

this

red.

down

full

had no

For older

to the ankles

robe open
belt,

but

in front

narrow

in winter.

Above: Container decorated with peacocks and gazelles.


First half fourteenth century. Palazzo Venezia Museum,
Rome. Left: Detail of landscape showing an Italian town.
Ambrogio Lorenzetti. Art Gallery, Siena. Right: St
Nicholas saves three women condemned to death
(detail). Correr Museum, Venice

tf

garment underneath could be seen. This fashion was


later taken up by the men, who adopted it, with

some modifications,

for their cloaks.

The

head-dress

crown, and the

face was
which passed under the chin.
From the North spread the fashion for furs, which
were also obtained from Asia, after the first Crusades.
Bear, sable and marten were very expensive, and so

terminated in

framed by

a stylised

small net

they often used lamb, fox, hare, cat and even dog.

There were long

down to

furs

Medieval shoes.

ventory included:

women wore

French

the chainse, a full-length

undergarment which they took off

at

going to bed. The dress was shorter,

full,

with wide

by a
made of cloth or metal. Often the bodice was
embroidered and held

sleeves,

belt

night before

in at the waist

the ground, fur linings

Gradenigo

for cloaks (Graziano

in his

wardrobe

in-

big fur of hare covered in

'a

borders for collars and sleeves.


were sometimes dyed, usually a brilliant
scarlet; ermine was adorned with the little black tufts
at the end of the little animal's tail.

vermilion

White

cloth'), fur

skins

known to
Xenophon noted that

Gloves were already

the

Romans and

cut at the waist to allow for a fuller skirt. This dress

even

was abandoned when the surcot came into vogue;


this was a garment that was very wide and very long,

gloves with separate fingers, but medieval gloves

its

fullness gathered in at the waist.

rectangular

fastened

by

or

semi-circular

cords.

French

On the shoulders

cloak

women

was worn,

invented the

fashion for two-coloured dresses, a fashion

which

spread to Italy and England.

Their hair was

worn

their shoulders or

it

end of the thirteenth century

women

started to cut

their hair,

and some even shaved

They

used stockings in winter, and had low,

also

pointed shoes.

it

off completely.

Men wore the chainse like the women,

but soldiers had breast-plates of various types, or


a

else

visor,

sym-

give a glove was a sign of trust to throw


;

to deal a
a

blow with

To

glove or

glove was an act of provocation,

challenge which was followed by a duel. Gloves in

were made of iron

for soldiers,

or of leather, specially reinforced, for falconry.

The

was quickly taken up by women,


had them made up in silk, leather, hemp, skin,

fashion for gloves

who

fastened at the wrist

often lined with fur.

by buttons or with turn-ups


Later they were adorned with

embroidery and precious

stones.

The skins were often

treated with perfumes, and sometimes with poison-

ous substances for

when

less

romantic purposes.

worn

Strict rules

or to enter a church, to salute, to dance or to render

strips, a

helmet with

women

were influenced by French and


fashions, though they often wore over their
another sleeveless tunic, open on the hips

below the waist

-*

metal greaves, knee-caps, metal shoes with

Northern
dresses

They were

bol of authority as well as of feudal investiture.

bidden to appear in the presence of the feudal lord,

with metal

spurs and metal gloves.

Italian

origin.

the Persians used

mesh or
moveable

short tunic entirely covered with metal

plaited

were probably of German

the thirteenth century

on

was covered by a guimpe, a


was swathed around the neck. Towards the

divided by a parting;
veil that

loose

earlier.

so that the contrasting; colour ot the

regulated

gloves were to be

it

was

for-

homage in any other way while wearing gloves.


The care of feminine beauty was felt to be a subject
of particular importance. Trotula,
of the School of Salerno,

who

woman

doctor

lived in the year

gave advice which was followed for

many

ioo,

years to

The cobbler's shop. Medieval miniature. Fourteenth century

come.

To keep

women

even

slim, a

problem which preoccupied


Dame Trot (as she was

in those days,

called in England) prescribed bathing in sea water,

and using

as a

deodorant infusions of herbs, such

as

bayleaves, calamint, absinthe and hyssop. For the

women, she recommended


of frictions with cow dung dissolved

more generously
the application

built

good wine, followed by a prolonged stay in


'stove', a small chamber which was heated with a

in

of elder-wood to such
sweating was obtained;
relaxation in bed

improved the

would achieve the same


There were further

it

was suggested,
to

prevent

of leeches, which were supposed to reduce unsightly

April.

The

Comunale, Padua

remove superfluous

henna, gorse flowers, saffron, eggs or


to soften hair

by rubbing the

a lizard boiled in olive oil; to

hair

by rinsing

hair blonde

calf's

with
in

it

kidneys;

with the body of

scalp

perfume the

hair

with

cardamoms

all

pods, vine tendrils, or a mixture of eggs,

iris juice, lily

breadcrumbs and vinegar.


Medical prescriptions were equally
scrupulously applied.

To combat

but

fanciful,

fever a

bag

little

would be hung round the


patient's neck. Against epilepsy it was enough to
hang round the sufferer's neck a medal on which
were engraved the names of the three Wise Men,
Caspar, Melchior and Balthazar. Migraine would
disappear if a piece of rope used by a hangman was
containing a green frog

effect.

Constellations'.

to

make

dissolved in rose water, or with watermelon juice,

wrinkles to whiten the skin through the application

The month of

quicklime; to

fire

good bath and

prescriptions

them with honey;

mouth

firm by coating

lips

dried roses, nutmeg, caraway and

circulation. 'Sand

graves [sand baths] near the sea bed',

healthy by rinsing the

with lukewarm wine; to make

the

temperature that profuse

after this, a

gums

redness; to keep

Detail of the 'Allegory of the

sign of Taurus. Hall of the Palazzo

tied

To

around the head.

lessen

labour pains

woman was encouraged to wear her husband's socks;


he was advised to climb the nearest

bell

tower,

encircle the biggest bell with his wife's belt, and

make

it

ring three times.

There were numerous remedies against vermin:


the bed was brought into the open air, and beaten

Good Friday; or one could keep


round the embers of a fire lighted
on St John's Day; or sweep the room from the outside inwards towards the fireplace on Ash Wednes-

with

a hazel

alight

all

twig on

the year

day Eve; or beat the beds three times with a hazel


sprig, in the spring, at the first croaking of the Irogs.

Towards

the end of the eleventh century the feudal

system was modified by the trend towards

sovemment, which
Craft-guilds and

self-

resulted in the establishment of

Communes. Noblemen and burg-

compromise, a sworn pact which was


the basis of the city's government. The burghers
organised themselves; and the tradesmen and the
hers reached a

artisans
earliest

bellious

formed Guilds. The Roman Guilds were


known Guilds, but because they became
and mutinous

clans,

the
re-

they were in great part

by Julius Caesar; later they were reorganised by Augustus, who, however, put them
abolished

under the control of the

State, so that

they did not

transcend their function of protecting production and


labour.

The Guilds had

period of decadence during

the barbaric invasions and the feudal system, but

revived in the
tions, later as
:

Communes,

first as

were

simple associa-

compulsory organisations of producers

Detail of a procession,

showing headgear. Lom-

school, fourteenth century. Trivulzio collection,

8]

Detail of fresco

who wanted
The

from

the hall of the Castle of Manta, Saluzzo

to protect the interests

of

their group.

were almost all connected with the


textile industry; amongst those who first organised
themselves thus we find the weavers and the dyers.
At this time, ladies wore soft flowing garments,
early Guilds

with very high waists to enhance the beauty of the

were narrow, almost tight fitting;


on one side to allow a glimpse of the
petticoat; the neckline was square and was often
bordered with a dark binding. A popular dress was
the dalmatica, a tunic of uneven length, with slits at
the hips, bound with a gold border. The sleeves of
this dress were short and caught above the elbow
with gold bands, from which ribbons of the material
would hang. This tunic was worn over a full-length
robe with long narrow sleeves.

breasts. Sleeves
skirts

were

slit

In Italy the

wealth and

social position

of

(orangy

morello (dark purple) and tawny

Blue

yellow).

workers, white cloth for


clerks,

was reserved
monks, dark green

cloth

for

for

and brown for knights; cloths with multi-

stripes were for messengers and pages.


During this period hats took many different shapes
and forms turbans, berets, cones, top hats with wide

coloured

upturned brim, bonnets or hoods. The hood was


often a told of the cloak passed over the head, a
fashion that was popular with

women

and that the

poet Guido Guinizclli praised with these words:

Who

has seen Lucid with her hood

Covering her head


There

Who

is

no

man

oh

in the

how
Laud

it

oj

suits her!

Abruzzo

wouldn't Jail head over heels

in lore

with her.

women

was often indicated by the colour of their clothes.


The brighter colours were reserved for fine ladies:
82

green,

scarlet,

As time passed clothes became richer and more


extravagant than ever before. Dresses had longer

Another

trains,

jewels became heavier and adorned the

enormous waste. Pope Gregory X,

in the

from the same

fresco

body

from head to toe; accessories became more precious.


Finally sumptuary laws were passed to put an end to
this

detail

Engraving of fifteenth-century

castle

second

Council of Lyons, amongst other prohibitions forbade


tion'.

women

Two
It

that veils
gear.

was ruled
should be

veils

that trains

worn

women

of fine linen and

Philippe

le

also gold

and

that

silver

must be shorter and

in place

which they looked

In France.

Pope commanded

women

Very ingeniously

wearing
gold,

wear 'ornaments without modera-

forbidden to

pearls be
braids'.

to

years later 'the

of any other head-

evaded

silk,

this

law by

interwoven with

ten times

more

attractive.

Bel forbade dukes, counts,

own more than four garwomen could only own one


were heiresses who had inherited

barons and their wives to

ments; and unmarried


dress, unless
castles.

they

Moreover he forbade burghers' wives

ermine,

petit-gris, squirrel,

to

wear

gold and precious stones.

^v^/^ffr^'fecLi
83

But even the King had his small defeat. In his edicts
he had forgotten to mention shoes, so that these became a symbol of elegance, especially through the
efforts of a certain sieur Poulain. He invented a new
type of shoe,

more

or

pointed according to the

less

rank of the wearer. The poulaine,


as

long

as

cised

common

We

and only half a foot

people.

of Arc was an extraordinary

managers of great enterprises

cannot leave the Middle Ages without some

women

epoch of

in this

The

in international trade,

and embroiderers.

abbess Hildegard of Bingen considered that

the decadence of

Church and

society in the twelfth

women from the


nobility had a very different position from women of

reason, she started a feminine religious

lower degree. Clotilde, the wife of Clovis, played

the North,

In the

transition.

Middle Ages

soldier. In

one hundred and eight professions were exerby women: they were weavers and traders,

miniaturists, doctors

reference to the role of

competed with trouba-

daughters. Marie de Ventadour was as extraordinary


a poet as Joan

two feet for princes and noblemen, one foot

called,

Women who

others.

dours included Countess Beatrix of Die and her

Paris

for rich people of lower degree


for

was

many

was

as it

Conches, Joan of Toulouse and

sades: Isabella de

century was due to masculine weakness. For

this

movement

in

icism,

which was in the end defeated by the


masculine philosophy which knows only one ethic
for men and of men the other half of mankind is

tance in European history.

considered only in so far

decisive role in the conversion of France to Cathol-

which of course was an event of radical imporWhen there was a weak


monarchy and a strong nobility, in the confusion

that followed

own

women

often fought to preserve their

Widows, on behalf of

estates.

when

their children,

as

it

is

useful to

men.

Thomas Aquinas wrote 'Woman was created to help


man only in procreation, because in any other work
another man will provide better assistance than a
woman.' This was written while

women had the full

enemies with the strength and conviction of men.

burden of work

in the towns. In the

Eleanor of Aquitaine and Matilda, wife of William

late

defended their

fiefs

the Conqueror, are

women

great political importance.


territories in their

Narbonne,
level

who

threatened by vassals and

of

this

period

Both governed

who
their

had

own

kept her numerous husbands to the

of prince consorts, was

patron of the Church

and of troubadours; she fought valiantly for


years to defend her inheritance, and

many

was often con-

sulted in difficult feudal disputes. For sixty-five years

Flanders was governed


sisters

by two women,

two

the

Joanna and Margaret; and Margaret's labours

restored her country

which had been devastated by

war. Blanche of Castille, Louis VIII's wife,

was made

widow, fought

men in her land

when

she

against the rebel noble-

she concluded the peace of Paris, and

protected the Jews, and

when

her son St Louis

came

of age, she continued to exert her influence on

government;

her

daughter-in-law,

Margaret

of

Provence, though she detested her, followed her

example.

N4

Women

took part in the

first

two Cru-

and

Middle Ages, when men took the place of

women
towns

husband's absence. Ermengard of

in the fields

in several feminine occupations,

fell

German

into a period of decadence.

In the courtly civilisation of the twelfth century

women

had learnt to sing and

and to philosophise;
high cultural

level.

recite, to

poems

were conducted at a
But towards the end of the

their lives

women
who must

Middle Ages men believed


vessels

write

with nothing to

say,

in church, in the family

and in

were empty
be kept

society.

silent

Forgotten

were the times of the great abbesses and queens, of


the great ladies of courtly life, of poetesses and
mystics women had to accept life, men or poverty

as

they came.

voice

From time to time, however, a feminine

would be

raised,

high and

clear, like that

of St

Catherine of Siena.

The only resource of most women was fashion,


which at the beginning of the Renaissance was to
become even more splendid, cumbersome and
sophisticated.

Ivory

comb from Germany. The

carving depicts the

fountain of youth. Victoria and Albert

The
Fifteenth

Century

Museum, London

>**r *

v
k'

<

f,

>

physically ugly, with a bulldog face

The Early Renaissance


Middle Ages, through transformations, wars and struggles, was born the Renaissance. The Communes disappeared and the lordships

From

the crucible of the

and oligarchies took their place,

new political system

supported by the majority of the urban bourgeoisie

and by the lower

classes themselves,

who were

tired

of continuous internal wars and their tumultuous,


disordered
political

life.

The Renaissance brought not only

transformation but also

both Latin and Greek. The

in culture,

of interest

revival of learning

widespread growth

provided

meeting point for the

different social strata.

The

interest in classical learning, in those studies

that Cicero

had described

as

'human', gave birth to

humanism, which was the perception of the dignity


of man

as a rational

tial

spirit

of humanism had

enormous influence on scholarship, literature, the fine


arts, science and philosophy, and on every aspect of
everyday

life.

And

the changes in fashion punctili-

ously underlined this cultural evolution, translating


the

new

ducted

that

all

surrounded

greatest geniuses of her time and with the


ful

princes;

She con-

her.

correspondence

complicated

with

the

most power-

ambassadors, Papal Nuncios and the

Knights of Rhodes wrote to her about what they saw

and heard; Pigafetta described


uncharted

travels in

responded

with

to her his fabulous

The Marchioness

seas.

provided her with the best

also cor-

who

merchants

and

craftsmen

in the international

market

adornment of herself and her ladies-mwaiting, her rooms and her palaces. From France she
for

the

had sent to her amethysts and

fabrics, toilc

latest fashion, the

Reims

tic

and gold chains, and wooden dolls dressed

in

the

mannequins of the time.

She was interested

in

everything

affairs

of

state,

the latest fashions in jewels or dresses, the purchase of


a

turquoise or a Persian

news

statue, the

was

cat, a

that the last

musical instrument or

finished, or that her sister Beatrice

like that

Canto of Ariosto's poem

owned

a belt

of St Francis, but studded with precious

beauty into luxurious clothing and

taste for

splendid furniture.
sensitivity, at

sionate interest in

being, a recognition of the essen-

goodness of man. The

but she loved

him faithfully. In her letters Isabella unconsciously


showed her proud and sweet character and her pas-

Women,

with

their intuition

every turn caught the

and

mood of this new

Illustration

from the manuscript

d'Ascoli. Venetian school.

V Acerba
'

by Cecco

Tnvulziana Library, Milan

consciousness; however, with few exceptions, they

were relegated

Some

to a role inferior to that

great feminist intellects, however, shone

brilliantly, for

example

woman

Strozzi, a

that

life

who

most

woman.

parents, Ercole d'Este

and Eleanor of Aragona,


both

literature

and she was one of the most cultured

her time.

poured

into her letters, and Isabella

carefully educated Isabella in


arts,

classes,

Gonzaga, Marchioness of Mantua,

accomplished and learned

Her

of Alexandra Mancini

of the middle

her philosophy of
d'Este

of the man.

From her father she inherited

and the

women

of

three passions

building palaces, travelling and organising theatrical


spectacles.

From

her mother she learnt the arts of

embroidery and of music; she played the harp, violin,


clavichord and the lute. She had a great love of literature,

and from the days of childhood she learnt to

appreciate

Italian

translations

of French

novels,

Spanish romances, the letters of Pliny, the

com-

mentaries of Caesar, Boethius' Consolation of Philosophy, and


as

many

other Greek and Latin authors such

Euripides, Plutarch, Seneca, Plautus

Her erudition was

far greater

husband a man of arms

Left:

and Terence.

than that of her

rather than of letters, and

Herodias. Detail of Herod's Feast. Masolino. BapCastiglione Olona

tistery,

Following pages: 'The Birth of the Virgin'. Detail. Fra Carncvalc. Metropolitan

Museum, New York

.<

Attcr the beginning of the fifteenth century dresses

became more sumptuous, and

increasing travel and trade


encouraged the exchange of fabrics between European
countries. Left: Pisanello. Dreyfus Collection, Paris.

Right: Pisanello. Private Collection, Chantilly

went into the minutest details


(as later Madame de Sevigne was to do), giving her
orders with the same precision and clearsightedness,

stones. In her letters she

be

it

matter of State defence, or the subject of

painting.

'She most strikingly and perfectly per-

French fashion, launched

at

the beginning of the

by Marie de Cleves, was the hennin


a cone balanced on the head, from the tip of which
hung a light veil, often woven in gold. A variant of
this head-dress was shaped somewhat like a saddle,
fifteenth century

with

draped

forehead.

90

The

veil,

which

fell

on the

priests

carefully shaven

fashion for the hennin spread to Italy,

who

taught the street urchins to run after ladies dressed in


this fashion,

France

this

crying in mockery 'Hennin, hennin' In


.

headgear grew to such enormous

that architects

were obliged

pass

through comfortably, without having

their heads. Isabella

brocade

size

it

to

of
to

lower

of Bavaria wore one of gold

a veil that

and back. In order to


fashion

Court

yard long, studded with precious stones,

from which hung

its

sizes

to enlarge the doors

the Castle of Blois to allow the ladies of the

sonified the aspirations of the Renaissance.'

notwithstanding the opposition of the

covered her shoulders

restrain the devotees to this

became necessary

to pass a

law regulating

according to the rank of the wearer.

The
its

fifteenth century

headgear

was known

for the folly ot

the multiplicity and oddity of

and hennins were famous; sometimes

its

coifs

made of many-

coloured gauzes, or of saffron-scented muslin; or of


stiffened

Holland cloth stretched over

with finely-pleated trimmings and

a rigid

frame,

a veil fixed

by

golden brooch; or of turbans studded with gems; or


mitre shapes in golden brocade. Amidst such luxury
the

and

round low crown


a slightly turned-up brim, was modest and simple.

little

hat of Joan of Arc, with

first few decades of the fifteenth century


became more sumptuous and underwent

After the
dresses

certain radical changes.

The Greeks and Romans had

garbed themselves
in various

in fabrics

without seams, draped

ways, sometimes to create the illusion of a

Middle Ages, the Barbarians replaced


the draping, which was uncomfortable to ride and
fight in, with dresses, which were pulled over the
head and sewn with coarse stitches each time they

sleeve. In the

were worn. Though in France buttons had been


known from the time of the Merovingians, in other
countries they were not m common use until the end
of the fourteenth century; this was due partly to the
feeling that buttons
as

were the symbol o( a

'loose'

life,

they allowed one to 'loosen' one's garments with

greater ease than before.

91

Right: Six illustrations

from

the Codice Capodilista. Civic

Museum, Padua

Women's

dresses in the early fifteenth century be-

came more sumptuous with the use of new fabrics


damask (so called after the town of Damascus that
had inspired

its

typical patterns) plain coloured but

with threads of different texture woven into


taffeta

of Persian origin; Genoese velvet; and

made from

it;

fabrics

Improved communications with even very distant lands and more


the by-products of silk.

frequent journeys helped the spread of different


materials to

At

this

material,

all

parts of Europe.

time the dress, usually

was designed with

bodice, supported by ivory or

made

in very

heavy

high, tight-fitting

wooden

busks that

were enamelled, carved or engraved. In France and


also in Italy
line,

women deepened and widened the neck-

sometimes exposing

Eleanor,

their bare breasts, as did

the favourite of Charles VIII.

She was

present, thus 'disarrayed', at a banquet organised in

her honour during the Italian campaign of the King

Master of LomMilan
Library,
Trivulziana
century.
Fifteenth
bardy.
Frontispiece of illustrated manuscript.

of France. Eleanor and her

rivals in elegance, to en-

hance the beauty of the bosom, used poppy water, an


infusion made of ivy, rose oil and camphor.
The tight-fitting bodice was attached to a skirt

which was gathered or flowed in soft pleats. Skirts


were often caught up with silver and golden hooks

Figures

92

on

Florentine chest showing the influence of ancient culture on dress. Victoria and Albert

Museum, London

J-U

t-

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93

allow time for herself and her maids-in-waiting to

perform the complicated

The

monsa
from

on

trains

dresses that

century before,

his pulpit: 'If

of washing

task

their hair.

had caused so many

ser-

bishop had thundered

women

had needed

a tail,

God

would have provided them with one' grew longer


and longer, and were often made heavier with embroidery or precious stones, so that they had to be

by pages. Thirteen-year-old Margaret, niece


of Francis, on the day of her wedding with the Duke
of Cleves, had to be carried bodily to the church becarried

cause her dress,

woven with

gold and studded with

precious stones, was so heavy.

and Arachne. Engraving from Ovid's Metamorphoses. Fifteenth century

Many

Pallas

were embellished not only with

materials

formal designs of Eastern origin but also with patterns

of leaves and flowers. Nettle leaves were embroidered

which were masterpieces of the jeweller's art. Long


sleeves attached to the bodice by strings terminating
in a gold or silver tip (or aiguillette) and passed through
open buttonholes in the dress were another refinement, which came of the German influence. In
France sleeves were very wide, or shaped like funnels,
with fur cuffs. In Italy they had either horizontal or
vertical slits, skilfully placed slashings through which
the shirt puffed out, or else they were very tight on

in

the forearm, reaching to the wrist.

a little collar, tight-fitting

of

Isabella

was not only the patroness of

Castille

Columbus and co-governor of Spain

Christopher

with her husband Ferdinand not only was she

a great

political

engaged

figure,

waging war against


Moors from her own

in

Portugal, and driving the

country, but she also introduced the fashion for


sleeves

slit

from top

and fastened
buttons.

at

to

bottom, or divided into

regular intervals with gold or silver

The chemise was allowed

through the

show,

sticks in

mended

together

nail-cleaners

cleaners,

wood
that

with

and

tongue-scrapers

or precious metals.

It

tooth-

ear-cleaners,

little

was recom-

hands and eyes should be washed

autumn. (At

a later date

water became more popular

especially after a journey,

and

them

it

immersion

among

The bath was considered

to

in cold

in

year

hot

means of

many

relaxation,

ladies used to

to the extent that they had breakfast served

in their tub.

where her

ing for her

94

the aristocracy.)

Hair was washed every week,

and Lucrezia Borgia had her journey from


Ferrara

skirt,

The

fiance

the white sleeves and stockings of Joan of Arc.


'smallest soldier

of France' (she was only

five

owned a wardrobe of which chroniclers have given us many details a black doublet with
feet four inches)

sidered

woman,

breeches (which were con-

shocking because they were

woman

albeit a

When

tunic and a woollen beret.

Dauphin of France
vermilion
Charles,

silk

Due

the English.

and

in

worn by

soldier), a short lead-grey

Joan met the

Chinon, she wore

a huque

a dress

of dark green, the

d'Orleans, for her

Another of her

of

gift ot

good service against


was red woollen

dresses

cloth of Flemish origin, lined with white

silk,

en-

with marten; these elegant but very practical sleeves

complete bath, which was usually taken once

prolong

huque, a short sleeveless tunic, to contrast with the red

period gold and

water every morning; hot water was used only for


in the

nac pale green nettle leaves decorated the dark green

crusted with eighty-three nettle leaves of green cloth,

and pomades made

for cosmetics

for the

appliqued to the violet cloaks of the Sieurs d'Armag-

with

On a woman's dressing table at this

background

a black silk

puff out

to

slits.

silver bottles

great

strips

white velvet on

cloaks of French princes; silver nettle leaves were

Rome

Duke Alfonso was

postponed for several days,

full sleeves

gathered

at the wrists

and trimmed

she used as pockets in the fashion of the time.

Joan of Arc was a soldier, a woman with a mystical


and masculine soul, but Margaret of Scotland, the
first wife of Louis XI, who was born about 1425, was
a

weak woman, soon to be broken by

life

her tumultuous

and by the unjust jealousy of her husband. Her

husband, the only king of France

who was

never

dominated by women, but had two wives and ten


favourites, had married Margaret when she was ten
and he only fourteen. His impetuous and imperious
character pushed

him

into

numerous adventures,

both amorous and warlike, so that Louis neglected


Ins wife.

She found comfort

in

her long periods of

to

wait-

in order to

Right: 'Allegory of the Months'.

Schifanoia Palace, Ferrara

)etail.

Francesco Cossa.

i3

***

it

95

> "

"

....

Women's hair stvles.

Pisanello. Albertina Librarv. \*ienna

"Portrait

of a Ladv.' Domenico Veneziano

by composing love poems and having


innocent discussions with her ladies on the tendre

words,

amour, part of the tradition of chivalry.

funeral oration of Louis

loneliness

gaming
toad on a

In these superstitious times the recipe for

was to capture a
Venus was shining', dry it. reduce
powder, put the powder in a little bag made of

the heart of one's beloved

Friday night "while


it

to

and put the

soft linen,

little

bag for three days

at the

where Mass was celebrated. This


powder was sprinkled on a bouquet of flowers which
was offered to the girl she would smell the flowers
and inhale the powder, and would immediately burn
with love. Love and fidelity were kept at a constant
foot of an altar

pitch

by burning

honey on her bed and sprinkling

the ashes.

It a

fell

in love

persisted in fidelity to her

was to put

'Fie

upon

lite:

me no more of it." The


was cynically concise: 'Our

speak to

spouse has died of excess of poetry.'

He soon

consoled himself by falling

Marguerite de Sassenages,
cleverly.

where

The story goes

the King had

tending to have

lost

who

in

love with

pursued him very

that she lingered in a corridor

to pass,

and

lifted

her

her garter, and in this

skirt,

pre-

way made

Jeanne de Laval, second wife of Rene d'Anjou. Medallion.


aurana. Bibliotheque Nationale
I

lock of hair of the beloved, by

spreading

man

of eighteen, expressing her bitterness with the

with

husband,

this

with

woman who

all

he had to do

magnet under her bed.

Louis XI did not in the least appreciate the pastimes


ot his queen.

Not

very cultured man. suspici

indifferent to the 'Paradise

by

his

bittered because he
his

of Love", he was incited

chamberlain Jamet du Tillay. and became em-

wife to

a state

had no

heir.

His cruelty reduced

of neurasthenia: though she ate

baskettuls of unripe apples

and drank pints of vin<

remedies

which according to common belief encouraged pregnancy Margaret never wore the
necklace of green-coloured diamonds which were
supposed to help in labour. She passed away

at the

the disappearance of the hrrmin the hair


ribbons in the classical manner.
Margherita Gonzaga*. Detail Pisanello.
>uvre
fter

bound

in

A Jewish

wedding.

Illustration

from

.1

manuscript. Jacob ben Essen. Vatican Library,

Rome

*
*

mi*

him notice

The

her.

garter had been an adjunct to

feminine elegance since the fourteenth century. According to legend,

it

was the garter

Countess of Salisbury during

by the

lost

and picked up by

a ball,

King of England, which gave birth to the


Order of the Garter, to which twenty-five knights
were elected, the King himself presiding. When

Edward

III,

Edward

picked up the countess'

III

little

accessory,

the courtiers couldn't help laughing at the confusion

of the lady. Very gallantly the King, lifting up the


little

of brocade, pronounced the historic

circlet

nowadays
was not always popular. The Duchess

During the Renaissance the garter


of Orleans, however, had
ters,

whole

collection of gar-

of which some were of gold and enamel work,

with designs that signified her sorrow in her


hood. Mourning did not show
eccentricities, often

of dubious

had had well-defined

itself

taste,

widow-

only in such

but for centuries

Wearing black was the most usual expression of


grief. Women wore a dark cloak with a hood, and
In an elegy,

composed

in

Brittany,

sought the protection of Maximilian of Austria, and

The wedding was celebrated


a peculiar and somewhat
unorthodox ceremony. The bride had to lie down in
a splendid four-poster bed, and the Austrian Ambasasked him to marry her.

by proxy

in

Rennes with

sador, Zolfang de Polhain, keeping in his

right leg,

which

for a

moment

Anne de Beaujeu,

women

of France'

'the

cloth around their faces.

Arabic on the occasion of

of Roger the Frank, Prince of


mourning was described thus: 'They had
been gaily dressed like doves, but they came back in
their mourning like ravens.' In 1187 the news that

messengers clad in dark clothes. Often

mourning would cut off their

Italy

women

hair, as did the

Duke of Puglia, when

by
in

wife of

all

the

new one celebrated between

her and King Charles VIII.

The

union, even

if due

to

political necessity, was quite happy, though the husband was repeatedly unfaithful. When he died, perhaps having eaten a poisoned orange, the queen shut

tears,

of the Muslims, was brought to

of

her father had described her, a

as

herself in her rooms, touching

the hands

foolish

woman-hater although a libertine, was still actively


manipulating the pawns in the marriage game, and
she succeeded in having the marriage of Anne of

Sicily, the

of Saladin, Jerusalem had fallen into

his

he introduced naked

least

the death of the son

after the victory

hand the

into Anne's bed.

Brittany annulled and a

rules.

wound bands of pure white

Anne of

Royal Act that named him proxy, uncovered

sentence 'Honi soil qui mal y pense.'

seldom worn

charmed by her childish


more by her dowry.
The allies lost the war and soon afterwards the
death of her hither left Anne of Brittany helpless
amongst the many who claimed her hand. Anne
little

beauty, and even

On

no food,

screaming and tearing her

Anne

the day

decided to leave her

finally

rooms, the Court was taken aback with


stead of wearing white for her
to the tradition that

colour by

surprise. In-

mourning, according

demanded

widowed queens

in floods ot

dress.

the wearing ot this

(called 'white queens',

because white was the symbol of fidelity to the dead

Anne appeared swathed from head

to foot

During the Renaissance mourning practices underwent considerable changes, due in part to Anne of

in a black robe, a colour that expressed her

mood,

Brittany. This daughter of Margaret de Foix

mourning never changed

William,

at

her feet Louis of Orleans,

that she

would be

his

she

was widowed.

who made

had had

her promise

bride as soon as he could bring

about the annulment of

his

not meet with the approval of Anne de Beaujeu,

who

became Regent at the death of the King until the


Dauphin could ascend the throne. She wanted the
Dauphin to marry Anne of Brittany, and her in-

The allies in opposition to Anne


numbered seven: the Duke of Bucking-

trigues started a war.

ham, the son of the Duke of Rohan, Jean de Chalons,


the Prince of Orange, the Infanta of Spain, Maximilian of Austria father of
d'Albret.

Left:

They

all

Margaret and Alain

were claimants for the hand of

Portrait of Lionello d'Este,

Pisanello. Carrara

because

it

'did not fade

did, because she finally

just repudiated

with time'. Although royal


married Louis XII,

Joan of France.

Marquis of Ferrara.

Academy, Bergamo

German armour.

mood
who had

colour, the queen's

marriage to Joan, the

unattractive daughter of Louis XI. This project did

de Beaujeu

husband),

Fifteenth century

Anne was very


this

beautiful, if slightly

(she hid

imperfection by wearing one shoe with

high

sole),

make

and she knew

herself

more

all

sermons from the

very

.to

masculine jeers and to

pulpit, she used to shave her eye-

brows, and to paint

made

the feminine artifices to

attractive. Indifferent, like all the

elegant ladies of her time,

lame

darker arch in their place; she

up her eyes and cheeks, and she underlined with

blue pencil the veins on her forehead, to enhance

consisted of raw veal cutlets, soaked

Illustration

Venice

and then applied to her face with bandages.

To eliminate the blonde down on her face, she rubbed


it

with

in a

powder made from

fifty eggshells

pounded

mortar with rose water; to polish her finger

nails

them with special sticks, and she kept her


by massaging them every evening with a
made from malmsey, musk-rat, benzoin, am-

she rubbed

hands
paste

soft

bergris and

Jewels

at

musk; and she wore gloves at night.


this time were the passion of men and

women alike. They

the transparency and delicacy of her skin.

Her face-pack

in milk,

rings,

adorned their fingers with many


and sometimes they even wore them on the

from 'The Legend of the True

Cross.' Michele di Matteo. Accademia,

thumb of the

left

worn over

hand. Rings were also

gloves, and often gloves were perforated so


rings inside could shine through. Men and

that the

women

both wore heavy gold necklaces studded with precious stones; gold chains, to keep in place the splendid

cloaks that

women threw round their shoulders when

they went out; gold belts to ornament


dresses or
their

from which men could hang

In

women's

their swords,

hunting horns or their daggers. Earrings, which

had disappeared during the Middle Ages, became

were worn even by men.

fashionable again, and

There were diadems of every kind, large ornamental


clasps to fasten cloaks

+*-..<***

a.

and enamelled brooches stud-

ded with gems. Very often almost magical powers

were attributed to precious stones: opals would protect all

men who were

called James,

were lucky, and pearls protected

onyx and jade

chastity.

Hair styles became important again after the disappearance of the hennin, which had hidden
In

Tuscany

women

lands of fresh flowers, or with bands


the head in the classical

Greek

women who

all

the hair.

adorned themselves with gar-

manner,

wound round

in imitation

of the

tied their hair

with narrow

ribbons. Included in girls' trousseaux

were whole

coffers filled
hair,

had

with bands,

veils

and tiny

which Petrarch had praised

veils for the

in describing Laura's

'The son of

Umberto de Socrati.'
Munich

Detail.

Baldassare

Estense. Alte Pinakothek,

Florentine velvet, with a chestnut branch design.

Musee

des Arts decoratifs, Paris

-->'

rv

&

103

There were gold nets studded with pearls


and ribbons set with precious stones. Hair was worn
hair style.

long, gathered at the nape, and

combed

to

frame

Though

there was great variety in hair styles, women


no longer deserved the satirical words of St Bernard,

who

jeered at

them because they had 'more heads

the face, with straight tresses to contrast with the

than the Devil'. Courtesans dressed their hair with

waving

curls all

hair at the temples, held back with bandeaux.

round the

gathered in

knot

while the

face,

at the

rest

of the hair was

top of the head.

Very fashionable was blonde hair, whether true or


false. Men were almost always clean shaven; the first
time an adolescent shaved
event of some importance,

Greek

times.

Those

who

shaven could choose

beard was

his
as

it

family

had been in ancient

preferred not to be clean

among

variety of beards:

pointed beards, beards shaped like brushes, goatees,

To
men

imperials, bowl-shaped, or even forked beards.

keep the beard in shape and the hair

in place,

used resins or else the white of an egg.

Men's

were often similar to the women's, but


of more modest proportions turbans and cones made
of felt, manufactured in Lombardy, caps falling back
on to the shoulders, and hoods. The latter were of
Tuscan origin. Florentines never took them off out
of politeness because 'the hood is never taken off in
greeting or paying respect to anybody unless it be a
hats

bishop or a cardinal; in front of magistrates, knights,


doctors or canons
fingers,

it

can be raised slightly with two

while the wearer bends

token of humility.'

common

little

people, while rich

on top of their hood.

down

his

head

In the fourteenth century, the

hat had been considered an object of luxury in


:

at

'The Legend of the True Cross.' Detail. Piero


Francesca. Church of San Francesco, Arezzo

della

the time of Rienzi

it

authority to wear a hat

wear

a hat

as a

was reserved for the


people would wear one

hat

had become
'.

a sign

and those

who

Rome

of great
did not

were considered of no importance

at

all'.

Engraving. Durer. Albertina Library,


Florentine engraving. Fifteenth century

104

Vienna

'The Marriage of Boccaccio Adimari and Lisa Ricasoli.' Detail. Cassone Adiman. Accademia, Fl orence

In Italy a very

the mazzocchio,
left

common

covering for the head was

from which

shoulder and

point

brim went

hung down

down to

the

the back, often

ground so that it could 'be wound round the


neck and round the head ... a protection against the
winds and the many subtle draughts of air'. Mazzocchio was also the technical term for the pad on which
the metal crown of a nobleman was placed. For
women, the mazzocchio was 'a padded circle of cloth,
to the

around, and

which swathes the head all


cloth on the inside; it covers

the

whole

is

106

to conceal the hair

and enhance the beauty of

of a woman's neck.

In the fifteenth century

men's hats became more

and more important, and so did

their shoes.

These

were made of leather, and reached the ankles in two


triangular pieces; the tip was narrow and pointed,
according to

a fashion

which originated

in the East.

Towards

the end of the century shoes had a square

tip, like a

duck's beak, a fashion launched by Charles

It

women from Nuremberg.

of a Lady'. Roger van derWeyden. Circa 1430.

National Gallery, Washington

line

was

head'.

Diirer. 1527

'Portrait

worn

lined with

Drawings by Diirer showing the more severe style


adopted by women of northern Europe. Albertina
Library, Vienna
Right: Studies of the dress of

from the balzo or rebalzo, a kind of large


round toque, usually made of velvet, which was

different

VIII of France, to hide the imperfection


feet

which had

Women

six

Boots were

toes.

preferred to wear

ankle, or else fastened

with

low

of one of his
also

worn.

shoes, closed at the

a strap;

French

women

chose to wear shoes shaped like slippers, which were


very highly embroidered.

designed that

it

steel, to

give

it

to

it

had

which were joined the thighand the greaves on the shoul-

pieces, the knee-plates

were shoulder-plates, to which were joined the


armlets which ended in gauntlets for the protection
of the hand. The helmet, also made of steel, was

ders

was made of
and

back-piece to protect the neck. Towards the end of

maximum

It

durability,

consisted of various parts fastened together: a collar-

hip-plates,

sides

had to be moulded

on the body of the future wearer.


tempered

two

and back-plate. At the

moulded on the head of the warrior, who in battle,


however, would use a helmet with a visor. After-

very important item in male attire was the

cuirass, so perfectly

plate, breast-plate

wards followed the fashion


the fifteenth century the

tor the basinet,

with

helmet with movable or

'The Moneylender and


fixed visor

was embellished by the

to

war transformed

crest,

with plumes,

which had symbolic

or veils of different colours

meaning. The fashionable young

go

Quentin Matsys. Louvre

his Wife.' Detail.

men who

did not

the cuirass into a fanciful gar-

ot

Savoy had done,

tively

so that they

'Green Count' and the 'Red Count',

the

In the fifteenth century men's garments


shorter, while their stockings,

shoulder-plates over a steel coat of mail; guards for

hips;

the

elbows:

very

it

high

blunted spurs over shoes

The weapons

in use

were

gers and cross-bows.

made of

as

parallel

in the

however, expressed

08

vertical

show,

useless.

squares and triangles.

certain colours, just as

down

through

even wore clothes with patches

families,

often open

The invention of gunpowder

fourteenth

century, to prefer brightly coloured garments, and

stripes,

young men abolished

material

they had done

in different colours,

The heads of

great

their preferences for

Amadeus VI and Amadeus VII

which were always


the short

skirt,

and

adopted the French fashion of the doublet, which was


different

of firearms, and in the

became

coloured or striped, were longer and reached their

swords, dag-

end made protective armour


continued,

rounded,

articulated steel.

shields, lances,

led to the use of different kinds

Men

with

leggings

called respec-

because of their liking for these colours.

was made of metal. They


wore hats with enormous brims around a low crown

ment, even although

were

slits,

as

While

more
make

it

to the waist, with

by

fastened

buttonholes.

through which

wide

thin

Sleeves

pure white

lapels in a

cord laced
often
shirt

had

would

did at the neck.

women tightened

slender,

men padded

their shoulders

fashionable, and

their coats

make them

with hay, to

and chest seem broader, and

tightened their waists with

borders of braid and

their waists to

fur.

a belt.

The doublet had

Fur became increasingly

was also used

to line capes

and cloaks.

In Paris in the fifteenth

century there were more than

four hundred furriers.

While young men followed

the

changing fashion and adopted short

people preferred long garments with

Cloaks were very

rich,

skirts,

older

full sleeves.

although shorter than the

worn by women they were always semicircular and in one piece, or they had two slits bordered
with fur; some had two wide lapels, from behind
which the sleeves emerged. The sleeves were often
double, with pleats, sewn to the shoulders as if they
were wings, made heavier with embroidered borders
ones

and studded with gems. These sleeves were sometimes talse (that

but were clad

is

the

arms did not

m narrower sleeves)

the hips, trailing

pass

and

through them,
fell

loosely on

down.

During the Renaissance, accessories became more


It was at this time that hand-

went out: one on


tucked

in

at

the

left

the waist or

wrist and the other one

round the neck.

handkerchief was for

fifteenth century the

In
a

the

time

allowed only to the nobility, and special laws were

made

became more generHandbags became necessary to hold the

to enforce this; later they

ally used.

handkerchief and cosmetics used to touch up one's

make-up (which, according to the author ot the


Roman de la Rose, should always be done in private).
Handbags became more and more splendid, with
embroideries

in relief

and trimmings

o\ braid

and

precious stones. Another feminine accessory which

changed was the


nant, a

fin,

which took

the shape of

.1

pen-

square or a triangle of material attached to

decorative handle, carved or engraved.


rors, too.

were often shaped

land mir-

though there
rounded French

like this,

elegant and important.

was always

were rediscovered. They had formerly been


used bv the Romans, who usually had two when they

with the back decorated with paintings of


battle scenes, or the Arabic style of wrought bronze.

kerchiefs

preference for the

flat,

shape,

109

The

which family documents were

caskets in

little

preserved, protected by complicated locks, and pro-

vided with

more

handle to

facilitate carrying, also

There were

ornate.

special

The

suggested that the meat of a day-old chicken should

usually

be boiled, strained in a sieve and mixed with almonds.

and playing

were very expensive, sometimes costing as much as fifteen hundred


gold pieces, because they were made of illuminated
parchment. Dice were made of ivory, and dice games
cards.

cards for playing tarot

had to be played in company,

law forbade

as the

throwing dice alone.


Table settings

also

recipes, among them one


of food for convalescents; she

She even wrote some

for the preparation

became

boxes,

cylindrical in shape, to hold cosmetics

love.

Not only

French and Spanish

Italian,

women

also the

women

but

of the North were dominated by the

laws of fashion, modifying them, however, to the


climate and customs of colder countries. In Holland
clothes

were more

austere, especially the headgear, a

large coif consisting of

two

stiffened horns

which

covered a net confining the hair and held in place by

began

to follow a

new

fashion.

the

stiff

embroidered

and by jewels, often

fabric

Men wore

Knives had ebony handles during Lent, to indicate

pear-shaped pendants.

by

kind, often falling to a point at the back. In Flanders,

time of penance; during Easter,

their colour a

handles were

made of a

different material, often of

ivory; handles used on Whitsunday had to be in

two

most

the

women

of European

conservative

swathed

berets of every

provinces,

which were

their heads in fillets

colours, half black and half white 'to express the half-

often arranged to stand out like wings, and looked

happy, half-sad nature of

like

began

to include forks

this event'.

Table settings

and spoons. Queen Clemence,

Henry the Obstinate, owned forty-two


which had two prongs only, were
recommended for eating fruit. Hands could be used
when eating so long as great care was taken, when
helping oneself from the main serving dish, to plunge

nun's

fillets

took

wound around

the wife of

wide, or

spoons. Forks,

chinstrap, or standing

into the sauce only the

first

joints of three fingers.

became more
carved fronts and movable
Furniture

confined in

tri-

a small

wooden

to hold the scis-

thimble, needles and thread of every colour.

a coif, a

material.

The

The

and was often attached

mode of dress
porary dress

is

would

corner to read their favourite books:

in Italy.

Margaret of York), The De-

were taken

Christine de Pisan, the

write like

been

left a

first

woman who

'dared to

man', not only to earn her living (she had

widow with

several children at the age

of

twenty-five) but also in order to affirm the rights and


position of women:

'Woman

is

equal to

man

his

no

as

Italy.

On

'vanities'.

prophecies, for

Italy

by Charles VIII then he


;

the rulers of Florence had


finally

and cosmetics,
first his

words

some were justified by


as

the invasion of

w as condemned by
T

He
when he was abandoned by

Pope.

but

to an improvised

veils

the

succeeded in escaping from his pursuers,

committed

him

the

common people,

arrested

and

tried

and

to death at the stake.

Despite the sermons, the sumptuary laws and the


bonfires

of

fashions

continued

women's status; she also gave advice on the best way


to become a good housewife and to keep a husband's

by God to rewas
the inspirer
He

the terrible events of the age, such

much

intellectual ability.'

did not devote herself solely to

Church and

But Christine
trying to improve

inferior in physical prowess, she possesses as

moral strength and

Dominican monk

books and ornaments. At

de Troyes (very dear to

of the City of the

pyre he would throw precious

Novellino by Masuccio

was written by

He was

the corruption in his country, be-

of many bonfires of
licentious

The Treasure

neckline with

lieved himself to have been chosen

Salernitano, Le livre dlieures

fence of the Conception of the Virgin and

at the

in France or in

comment on contem-

Savonarola's

generate the

last

severe,

loose, closely-set pleats. In contrast to this austere

nished with stools and cushions, brackets and iron

Women

was shorter than

train

who, shocked by

Ladies. This

portion of which jutted out over

Northern countries clothes were

was the woman's special corner in the home


decorated with marble, wood or stone, it was furfireplace

retire to this

points, reminiscent

the forehead, keeping the head-dress in shape.

Italy,

to place candles.

two

full sleeves, but they were never exaggerated. The


wide neckline, deep in the front and back, was always
tilled in right up to the neck with thinner stiffened

contained their writing materials.

which

in

of the saddle-shaped hennin. Hair, always hidden, was

In the

angular cases, were suspended from men's belts and

points on

the face forming a kind of

up

Sideboards were

Portable escritoires, writing-desks shaped like

sors,

very high or

often embellished with gathering and draping, with

chests

made of expensive wood and decorated with carving.

Sewing equipment was kept in


casket, divided into compartments

many shapes

had

elaborate:
tops.

with wire frames or

Stiffened

coifs.

starched, these

'vanities',

to

feminine

(and

masculine)

become more and more

luxurious and ostentatious, enriched in the sixteenth

century by Spanish and French influences, and by the


expensive Italian fabrics.

Pendant. Venetian design. Sixteenth century. Victoria


and Albert Museum, London

The
Sixteenth Century

Leonardo da Vinci, the friend of the Marchioness

The High Renaissance

of Mantua and one of the greatest

The

century

sixteenth

usually accepted as the

is

beginning of modern history.

The dreams of the


Middle Ages were abandoned, and the weak
by

feudal kingships replaced

ancient learning

which had been born

century deepened and came to

Europe's

new world

in the fifteenth

its full

in the field

of

as a gift

were introduced

truffles)

from

were

first

as

it

was

Queen of France, who


the

Ambassador

at the

century the foundations of modern medi-

cineespecially in the

work of an

of surgery

field

were

laid

ex-barber, Ambroise Pare, chief

physician of the Hotel Dieu, the largest hospital in


Paris.

This man, surgeon to four French kings, from

Henry

to

II

trainer

les

Henry

III,

wrote

playes faetes par

a treatise,

La methode

arquebuses

les

de

aultres

et

hastens a feu, which was about the aseptic care of


wounds, and was revolutionary for its time, as it had

been believed that the only

was

them

to 'rinse'

ness,

Pare

at

His studies in

the

first

since the

flight as a possi-

astonishing even

this field are

today for their precision of analysis and their pro-

Throughout

the

whole of Europe there was an

of the ancient world, and founded the Pleiade

way of sterilising wounds

in boiling oil.

Modest in

which produced hymns, eclogues and


whose main theme was love. In Spain Cer-

poetic circle
elegies

vantes, in his novel

Don

Quixote, ridiculed the old

romances of chivalry, and created

new

kind. In Italy there

minds

Portuguese Court, Jean Nicot.

with the

mythical Icarus to consider


bility.

He was
human

the greatest French poets, devoted himself to studies

used by Catherine de' Medici,

In this

hydraulics and architecture.

to

anatomy,

The discovery of North America

a variety

it

new impetus

explosion of genius. In France Pierre Ronsard, one of

first

and tobacco became fashionable, especially

received

science with his inventions and studies of

mari-

of nutrition: maize and potatoes (which

first

and thinker, gave

of his time,

phetic anticipation of inventions of the future.

flower.

was determined by the

role

brought new customs into Europe, even


thought to be

their

the love for

great discoveries and the foundation of the

time empires.

of

States jealous

The Renaissance and

independence.

painter, sculptor

artists

the

in

was

masterpiece of a

flowering of great

of Dante and Petrarch:

tradition

many
names of many women,

Ariosto, Aretino, Bandello, Machiavelli and


others.

Among

such

Gaspara Stampa. She was

as

Padua,

who

sionate but

these are the

used her poetic

unhappy love

Collalto. Vittoria

noble lady from

gift to express

for the

Conte Collaltino

Colonna, Marchesa

another personality of

her pas-

this period,

di Pescara,

whom

di
is

her con-

temporaries admired for the melancholy lyrics she

wrote

in

d'Avalos,

memory of her husband


who died prematurely.

Ferdinando

his great-

each 'miraculous' cure would say to the

who complimented him: 'I bandage the


wound, but God cures it.' He was so much admired
people

though

Huguenot, he was saved from the


famous Night of St Bartholomew by Charles IX,
that,

who

hid

him

in his

own bedroom

to

Portrait of a

man wearing

a ruff,

short breeches and hose

guard him from

the massacre that took place.

From America, discovered almost by

accident

by

Christopher Columbus, and revisited by Amerigo

Vespucci (who gave her


foods and

new

his

name) not only new

poisons, like tobacco and cola,

were

imported, but also novelties which fashion soon

made

her

own: gold and

and the plumage

silver in plenty,

of exotic birds with which fops adorned their

and which elegant


It

was

at

this

women used

for a

time that parrots

new

first

hats,

kind of fan.

appeared

in

Europe, replacing the talking magpies which had

been

all

the rage in the

last

And it was
kind cats, dogs,

century.

century that animals of every

birds took possession of the palaces, and


were devoted to their eare and breeding.
rels,

Left:

'The

Man

with the Clove'. Detail. Titian.

in this

squirstudies

ouvre

Following pages: Sumptuously dressed


of

woman

mural by Veronese. Villa Giacomelli.

ofGiustiniani family with her nurse. Detail

M.iser

As always, fashion reflected the mood of the age,


where masculine attire was concerned:
the small skirts and tunics vanished, and were replaced by padded doublets topped with ruffs. The
doublet was lavishly trimmed with gold or silver
buttons, precious stones and diamonds. Breeches,
very different from the loose trousers which came
from the East, became very close-fitting tights, with
a cod-piece which later ages considered indecent. The
cod-piece was lavishly decorated and was sometimes

were most popular, in the sixteenth century all perfumes were fashionable many objects were scented,
from horse saddles to shoes and stockings. The
Italians and the Spanish were masters of this art, and
each Court had its own perfumer. In Portugal, it was

used also

reckoned that to every four teachers

especially

as a purse.

All accessories

assumed greater importance than

ever before. Gloves became


site:

more and more exqui-

those belonging to Charles

close fitting,

made of

hundreds of

pearls; those

were supple and

cloth of gold encrusted with

embroidered with animal

of Queen Elizabeth were


figures;

Duke

Jacques de

Nemours, grand master of elegance, wore two


pairs, one on top of the other; he even owned gloves
to wear at night, lined with scented herbs and pomades to soften his hands. Charles VIII was con-

no

sidered uncouth because he only used gloves tor

falconry and boar-hunting.

Perfumes
as in

also

became extremely popular. Wherewas the fav-

the thirteenth century lavender

ourite,

and

and musk

in the fifteenth century violet

there

in the country,

were eight glove perfumers and twelve specithe art of cosmetics. Love of hygiene, howwas apparently very rare: Guido Postumo,

alists in

ever,

writing about Isabella d'Este, said


France]

women are rather dirty,

hands and other kinds of

'.

here

[in

with scabies on their

dirtiness,

but they have

beautiful faces.'

Women's

dresses in Italy during this period

very richly gathered

skirts

had

by bones, to which
were attached, sometimes

tightly fitting bodices stiffened

um&

<jm-

-tsstiU

Venetian engraving. Cesare Vcccllio

Four fashion plates from Degli Habiti antichi e moderni by


grandson. 1590. Bertarclli
Cesare Vecellio, Titian's
Library,

Milan

caught up on one side and

of

were generous but not

a petticoat. Dccolletages

immodest, and sleeves were close


the

glimpse

in front to give a

fitting,

puffed

at

armhole and sumptuously embroidered.

In

women

Venice

dressed in a distinctive style but

with increasing ostentation. Cesare Vecellio, Titian's

who

grandson,

issued hundreds of plates illustrating

the costumes of the world, gave a place of eminence


to

Venetian

fashions,

which

stipulated

different

clothes according to the social rank of the wearer.

The young

girl

who was

a long, full skirt,

down one

side; the

was modestly

the other hand,


material,

it

ot the

and the sleeves had

was clad

in

which allowed her


in a

bodice
slits

to

little

robe of precious
clogs to be seen.

coif covered with fresh

fresh flowers at her breast.

This fashion, introduced by


floral

marriage wore

kind o{ apron open

The up-to-date noble-woman, on

Her head was swathed


flowers, and she wore

made

deep decolletage

filled in,

reveal the shitt.

eligible tor

and over

lenry

decoration so popular that

III
it

of

fiance,

even became

1-

customary to strew the floor with


Florentine

petals

and

leaves.

women adorned their beds, as well as their

with garlands of flowers.

hair,

women would adopt a


which was Spanish in origin the bodice was
padded with wool or hair, and was shaped like the
'breast of a duck', lengthened at the abdomen; the
After marriage Venetian

of brocade or printed velvet revealed the under-

and sleeves were made

skirt,

ones

in double, the outer

very wide and almost reaching to the ground, the


inner ones

Not

lace.

much tighter and fastened at the wrist with

all

Venetian

women were satisfied with

the

conventional fashions of the day, however splendid.

There were

number of exaggerations,

the hair style with vertical curls

and breasts were

lifted

up by

soles,

six

jeopardised the balance and

women, whether

Venetian

shaped like

'a

which

necessary for the

husband or maid.

virtuous or not, started

custom of wearing over their dresses a black veil,


which came down from the head over the shoulders,
black

before going to bed was con-

sidered indecent, because people

were accustomed to

sleeping completely naked.

Knickers were also considered indecent, and were

worn only by

courtesans, for

whom they were made

of cloth of gold and silver. Later respectable

began to wear them

after

women

Catherine de' Medici had

launched the fashion. This

'little

duchess', daughter

of one of the richest bankers in Florence, highly edu-

was the niece of Pope Clement VII,

the

covering the whole body. This

and the grace of her body. The habit

a shift

with an extensive knowledge of Greek and

it

of putting on

enhance the pure white-

Latin,

inches or more,

made

ness of her skin

sheets to

cated,

a support,

very elegant to walk supported by

example

for

balcony'. Clogs (called chopines in French) often

had very high

Black was

on the forehead,

almost like horns. Necklines plunged precipitously

little

silk.

favourite colour for personal linen: Margaret of

Navarre used black

fashion

skirt

twenty-five embroidered in black

became

veil later

arranged her marriage to the son of Francis

of France; the King wanted

this

I,

who
King

marriage in order to

limit the increasing

power of the Emperor Charles V,

and so had formed

alliances

and Henry VIII of England.

with the sultan Suleiman

He needed

another

ally,

more powerful, and he obtained this by


marrying his second son, the future Henry II, to
Catholic and

Catherine de' Medici.

cape, and later a shawl, the typical zendado.

silk

Venetian

men

also

dressed in great splendour.

They wore close-fitting knitted tights which replaced


the tights made of material, but were only worn by
the very rich as they

were very expensive

these

were

secured round the knee by a garter, and attached to


the doublet with

hooks or double

pins.

Over

the

was worn, a tunic which buttoned


up and came to just above the knee. The zornea was a
little cape with wide sleeves, tightened round the
waist by a belt. But the favourite cape was the
'Turkish' one, which came down to the feet and had
very full sleeves. The 'toga' was another garment
tights the zipone

which was

typically Venetian, but

had nothing

common with the Roman toga except that here,

in

too,

was used as a symbol of authority; it was a long


flowing garment with open sleeves, and a band of
material, the 'stole', of the same colour as the main
garment as in Roman times the colour was symbolic
it

also

purple for Senators, violet for scholars, red for

Heads of the Council of Ten, black for the


nobility, doctors and magistrates.
In the sixteenth century shifts became one of the
most important items in a feminine wardrobe:

the

owned two hundred, and although


Maria Sforza owned less only eighty-

Lucrezia Borgia

Bianca
three

they were

tions in

118

gold and

all

extremely fine eight had decora-

silk,

another

fifty

were

plain and

'The Miracle of Bolsena'. Detail. Raphael. Mural, Stanza


di Elidoro, Vatican,

Rome

Right: Venetian dress and high-heeled shoes in the sixteenth century. Musee de Cluny, Paris

'Small in stature, thin, with coarse features and

bulging eyes', Catherine


adolescent husband,

oured of Diane de

by twenty-one
with

a taste for

life,

with

keep the love of her

failed .to

who was already secretly enamwoman older than him

Poitiers, a

extremely clever and cunning,

years,

court intrigue. Catherine lived a quiet


authority until she was appointed

little

during the minority of her second son,

regent

The astrologers who at her birth propheshe would be the cause of great misfortunes

Charles IX.
sied that

proved accurate. She was


faithful,

mother;

a neglectful

but not an obedient wife and a cruel woman


;

the chief responsibility for the

Night of St Bartholo-

mew, when thousands of Huguenots were massacred,

Costume

plates

Above: Engraving by Teodoro Viero


Below: From Degli Habiti antichi e moderni by Cesare
right:

with her. The King was publicly unfaithful to

her,

and even

paid

homage

azure

at the

From

Le Costume historique by

M.

A. Racinet

coronation ceremony not only

to his mistress

by wearing a tunic of
lilies and embroidered

strewn with golden

silk,

monograms of the

Vecellio

Below

rests

Diane de

royal

Poitiers,

initials

linked with those of

but even demanded that

his

mistress should be given the place of honour.

widow at the age of forty-one,


died in a duel with the Comte Gabriel

Catherine was

when Henry II

left a

de Montgomery, while wearing the black and white


colours of the beautiful Diane.

The queen of France

much
II, who

had ten children, but her progeny brought her


unhappiness

had

six

died

at a

tender age Francis


:

very weak constitution, died

at

the age of

IX died of tuberculosis at the age of


twenty-four; Henry III, unable to overcome his
sixteen; Charles

despair at the death of Marie de Cleves, the

he loved,

fell

into a mild madness, taking

occupations and passing


effeminate,

his

time with the

powdered young

woman

up feminine

aristocrats,

i}iigtwns

bedecked

121

in sumptuous garments
who surrounded him. Margaret had as weak a character as

with jewels, clad

her brothers, but she survived

Though he had a

all

of them.

temperament, Catherine

difficult

was constant in her love for Henry II. She was fully
aware that she could not compete with Diane de

who had

Poitiers,

beauty.
turn to

those days

In

legs.

the harmonious grace of great

With feminine cunning, Catherine tried to


good account the best part of her body her

women

comfortably seated, with both


rest.

Catherine invented the

side-saddle; in this

new

always stay in place, and

wear the
scandal

calecon.

rode on horse-back,
feet resting

a footas

position the skirt did not

it

was therefore necessary

This garment provoked

to

a great

among many who vainly objected to women

wearing

masculine garment.

The most important event in the


was the revolutionary

sixteenth century

religious

Reformation. The origin of

found

on

way of riding known

this

movement,

movement

in Luther's revolt against the practice

is

the

to be

of selling

He quickly found followers in Germany,


movement might not have spread to England

indulgences.

but the

if Henry

Aragon
of his

VIII had not wished to divorce Catherine of


in

Anne Boleyn, the second


The Pope forbade this union, and for

order to marry

six wives.

this reason the King of England decided to defy the


Church of Rome and set himself up as Head of the
Church. He never, however, abandoned the Catholic
faith,

and continued to burn heretics

his reign in the tradition

In the sixteenth
spiritual

but

until the

of Rome.

century the Papacy was not only

a political

power. Catholicism

time was exposed to the influences of


spirit:

end ot

the values of

humanism

at this

new pagan

easily penetrated the

Papacy, since they had the same Latin origin. At

time the Church was weakened by

the

this

same decad-

ence that affected the princes; the deep corruption of

which took from humanism its materialwas no whit behind the secular princes m
violence and deceit.
Pope Leo X is said to have lived like a spectacular
Roman prince, although he was less corrupt than
Pope Alexander VI, and less able than Pope Julius II,
who had tried to restore the power of the Papacy and
the Church,

istic

values,

free Italy

Above

left

from foreign

'Portrait

influences: the son of Lorenzo

of Laura Battiferri'.Agnolo Bronzino.

Palazzo Vecchio, Florence


Left: Dress worn by peasant

women. From Diversarum

Nationum Habitus. Pietro Bertelli. 1392. Bertarelli Collection, Milan


Portrait of Bartolomeo Panciatichi. Jacopo
Right:
Pontormo. Utfizi Gallery, Florence

tmm

[21

Ml \\\P\t

Drawings of German
Evelyn Collection

women

showing the more conservative

Two women from Liibeck,


Melchior Lork

1567.

styles

of northern European

Pope, more

Souls.

He

when

he had

Melchior Lork. John

Leo was more

the Magnificent,

than

dress.

a reveller

patron of the

than a Shepherd of

loved good cooking and jokes

crowned with

seedy

little

arts

such

as

poet called Barabello

laurel leaves in the Capitol.

Partly as the result of the shortcomings of the

Church, the Reformation, both

tries

as a political

through almost

religious force, spread

all

of Northern Europe, even reaching France and

Switzerland, but did not have any following in

because for Italian people

of their intellectual and


less it

dealt a deadly

sack of

Rome by

soldiers not only


Italy,

and

the coun-

but also

political progress.

blow to

Italy,

represented the negation

it

Neverthe-

the Church, ending in the

the Imperial army.

The German

brought the plague with them into

new

fashion

the slashed coat.

This fashion was invented not by the Germans, but

by the Swiss troops


Burgundians at the

-4

after

Battle

their

victory over the

of Grandson. Seizing

the coats of their defeated enemies, the Swiss tried to

them on, but were prevented by their tightness


came to slash them, and slits became
fashionable. Later they became so elaborate and

put

thus they

complicated that
to fray

scissors

tailors

brightly coloured

silk,

The German troops


"lattice"

lining,

usually of

was puffed out through the

breeches: these were breeches

ot

who

it is

designed

fashion

made of wide

separated from each other and

material

Vatican City, and

himself

launched the fashion for

also

reaching from the hip to


worn even nowadays by

The

The

the coat.

slits (U"

strips

used hot irons rather than

the cloth.

for

the knee. This

the Papal Swiss

said that
this

it

beards

at

this

time had been


I.

in

his favourite,

in

garment.

January 1521, the King of France was

of

Guard

is

was Michelangelo

launched involuntarily by Francis


the house

costume

On

the 6th

Uomorantin.

Madame d'Aneouleme,

Another drawing ot German


women by Melchior Lork from
the John Evelyn Collection

when he learnt that


crowned King,
slice
it

the

after

Comte de

he had found

Saint-Pol had been


a

broad bean

in his

of cake. In those days, on the Feast of Epiphany,

was usual

to play at tirer

prepared in which
guest

les

wis: a large cake

was

broad bean was hidden; the

who was lucky enough to get this in his portion

was supposed

The

story

is

to be elected King.

told that Francis

Together with the band of courtiers who


he arrived beneath the windows

his rival.

were

his followers,

of his chateau, and started to throw snowballs. These


were answered by a shower of apples, pears and eggs.
Unfortunately one of the guests of the Comte de
Saint-Pol threw a hot ember which fell on the King's
head, burning him so severely that he was dangerously

decided to punish

ill

for several days.

The

doctors had to cut his curls,

which were thick and long,

When

wounds.

to tend his

he recovered, Francis found he was bald and

by scars, which he hid by growing a


Thus changed the masculine fashion which in

disfigured

beard.

the fifteenth century had stipulated a shaven face and

ttg

long hair in the sixteenth century

a beard became the


was often divided into two
points, or it could be full, and was sometimes complemented by a moustache. To have a 'strong, clean and
;

sign of nobility. This

attractive'

There were

III

men cut their beards under the


down on the forehead.
eccentrics who wore their beards

appearance

and combed their hair

chin,

also

long on one side and short on the other, so

two

as to

have

profiles to present to the world.

By

the middle of the century masculine dress

all

marked Spanish influence,


which was especially shown in the ruff. At first the
ruff was simply a gathered collar which adorned the
over Europe reflected

shirt.

According

to the advice

of the Royal Minor,

Norwegian handbook of fashion,

shirts

correct length, shorter than the coat, but

the wrist and throat.

Then

had to be the

showing

the fraise or ruff

grew

at

to

such enormous proportions that the handle of spoons

had to be lengthened, otherwise the

made

size

of the ruff

difficult to eat.

it

sleeves became very full near the wrist,


where they were adorned by one or more frills.
Breeches towards the end of the century became
longer and were fastened below the knee with a
brightly coloured ribbon, which was replaced later
by a gold or metal button. Breeches were padded

Men's

with horsehair or hay and, reflecting the influence of


the French,

sometimes had

lateral

slits.

The

legs

were

covered with knitted stockings which became very


popular after an Englishman, William Lee, invented
a

knitting

this

machine which greatly reduced the price of

fashion accessory.

In France, masculine fashion

underwent changes

and transformations which reflected the taste of the


kings

who succeeded each other. At


men continued to wear a very

Francis

the time ot
close-fitting

left: French comb. Sixteenth century. Left: Another


engraving from Degli Habiti antichi e moderni

Above

126

doublet extending to the hips, from which emerged


short and very tight-fitting breeches, divided

multicoloured
knee, and their

stripes.

These breeches came to the

hem was

different colour, tied

by

covered by stockings of

over and under the knee with

and his court


two embroidered ribbons. Francis
loved expensive clothes, and were accused of displaying on their backs the income from their mills, their
I

'The Betrothal'. Lucas van Leyden. Antwerp

forests

and their lands.

with Henry

VIII, the

On the occasion of his meeting


King of France made

pearance dressed in white, with


doublet,

gold

belt, a

his

ap-

crimson

quantity of jewels and gold leather shoes.

His tent of painted cloth, sewn with gold thread,


precious things, looked like

fairytale

filled

\vith

castle,

surrounded by knights and horses caparisoned

in

precious fabrics and elaborate harness.

Museum

[27

During the reign of Charles IX men's shirt collars


became fuller and more heavily gathered. With
Henry III it became fashionable to wear padded
trousers and small semicircular capes which often had

trimmed with fur, and to use face


powder and wear dangling earrings. Men's hats became flatter and shaped like berets, made of velvet or
short sleeves

brocade, either with or without

brim, and adorned

with gems or plumes. Shoes were fastened round the


ankle with

bows

or

little

ribbons; sometimes thev

had two

vertical

slits,

through which one could

was quite unknown at this


was an increasing interest in
costume, and books began to be issued with engravings not only of foreign and ancient costumes but of
contemporary dress. These were not without their

The

period,

true fashion plate

but there

influence and tended to

make

fashion

more uniform

throughout Europe. This development would, of


course, have been impossible without the invention

Fashions worn during the reigns of Francis I, Charles IX and Henry IV. Costume Documentation Centre,
'The Tailor'. Detail. Giambattista Moroni. National Gallery, London

ft

SL

I2S

see

the stockings.

Paris.

Below:

of printing by Johannes Gutenberg in the middle

Christ

of the fifteenth century.

in

Before Gutenberg almost


the province of the

all

education had been

Church. Books were extremely

expensive, the task of copying very arduous and the


results

sometimes inaccurate. Few writers reached

sizable

audience before their death.

the courts, monasteries

but small. Charles

esteem because he

The

libraries

of

Church

in

Canterbury had the

richest library

Europe, comprising 2,000 manuscripts,

library public (although the

books were chained

the lecterns and reading benches) and


his

love of books in

who

which the books themselves spoke

complaining about the bad treatment

owned 910 volumes;

the Priory o{

them by

to

expressed

a treatise called the Philobiblion, in

and colleges were numerous


high

illum-

of France was held

in

all

Among private owners one of the best known


was Richard of Bury St Edmunds, w ho made his own
inated.

'those animals

on two

in the hrst person,

on

inflicted

legs called

women'

20

who continually exchanged them for linens and silks.


Although Gutenberg's invention was opposed by
who were afraid that they would be left
without work, and by noblemen who feared that
the copyists

their treasures

would

of printing spread

all

knowledge
was perfected

depreciate in value,

over the world

it

Venice by Aldo Manuzio,

in Leiden by the Elzevirs,


by the Etiennes. The costume plates most
popular in the sixteenth century were those issued by
the Frenchman Boissard and by the Italian Vico, and
these carried on the function of the French dolls in
spreading knowledge about fashion.
Feminine dress in the sixteenth century was greatly
influenced by the Spanish farthingale. This garment
encircled the lower part of the woman's body with a
series of hoops in the shape of a cone these were sewn
in the skirt, which was thus held rigid. In France the
farthingale was a bourrelet, a roll of felt at the waist
which widened the skirt. Marguerite de Valois loved

in

in Paris

this

fashion because

lowed her
'A

Man

in Blue'. Titian.

National Gallerv, London

it

made walking

to display dresses

with

Margot,

arbiter

of the

as

she

finer points

an English

*-^

coat.

Sixteenth

Museum, London

W^

century

woman, fond
life.

She was

right: Violet silk brocade embroidered with gold


and silver. Sixteenth century. Civic Museum, Turin.
Below right: English bonnets. Sixteenth century. Victoria
and Albert Museum, London

Above

in

skirt.

and embroid-

of fashion, and notorious for

of literature and every refinement in

used

al-

was usually called, was not only an

her amours, but also a very- gifted

Victoria and Albert

and

very wide

lavishly decorated with precious stones


ery.

Fabric

easier,

Ml

132

hfABITJ
A

ONGARIA.

D*

HABITJDHXA Spagna

-HABIT DlGERMANlA.
I

comparison of sixteenth-century fashions

in (on the

left)

England, and (above) Hungary,

Germany and

Spain.

From

Diversarum Nationum Habitus. Pietro Bertelli. 1592

surrounded by
artists,

intelligible

a talented

whom

with

group of nobles, poets and

that

she spoke an esoteric language

only to the

initiate.

new

Henry

III

of France, though he

silk

(imported from

foreign countries at very high prices), and compelled

women

to dress

velvet, silver
silk

silk

and

to enlarge the possibilities

and braid of gold and

and gold buttons, jewels for dresses and

middle-class

women

were allowed

trains

women

sleeves.

In that period both

often had double sleeves: a

were allowed only

the velvet chaperon

men and

narrow

silver;

(a

coloured velvet and

to princesses

Queen's ladies-in-waiting;

to use

only for the borders of their dresses, the lining

mock

of a limited wardrobe.

The edicts of Henry III forbade the wearing of cloth

more modestly. Black or tawny

embroideries were permitted only to noble-

women;

women,

French or Spanish peers, were

thrifty than their

able with

himself had an excessive fondness for fine clothes,

forbade the use of gold and

mood.

two dresses and ten pairs of sleeves to


contrive a number of combinations, and so effect a
considerable economy. This was not unlike our modern use of two skirts and a number of separate blouses

laws which attempted to control

the follies of the age.

could be changed easily according to the occa-

chronicler of the time noted that Italian

more

Extravagant fashions like the farthingale prompted


the passing of

it

sion or the

this

and to the

applied also to

silks,

down

over

headgear that came

the forehead) and masks. Princesses, especially during

journeys, covered their faces with masks to protect

sleeve,

them from

which was attached to the dress, and a fuller, shaped


sleeve which was joined to the bodice or doublet, so

women

dust,

wind and

the glances of strangers. If

of the bourgeoisie

wore

the farthingale,

it

had to be kept to certain prescribed measurements:

and

women

more than

Though
variations

of this class

sixty sons

at

the

were not allowed


a

to

spend

single dress.

the fashion for the farthingale and

swept across Spam,

England, the

Following pages: 'Ball

on

women

Court of Henry

III

in

France.

Italy

its

and

Northern Europe were not

of France".

Anonymous Louvre

T G'-^*
F

'#*

'

**

dPr

^.

|P^-

JbY

L.
i-

'J
9& *i

A
v

and

filled in

right

with

a linen triangle; or else

reaching

up to the chin. The size of the ruffwas not unduly

exaggerated. Sleeves, which

at first

had been very

wide, became narrower and narrower until they

were close

by

strips

fitting

they were often divided into layers

of material sewn horizontally. Towards the

end of the century

sleeves became funnel-shaped.


were often pleated and covered by a pleated
apron, and sometimes showed the underskirt.
Skirts

To

protect themselves

and long

pelerines

from

the cold

women wore

usually pleated. These

cloaks,

which had a characteristically shaped collar,


round and narrow, were also draped over the head
and in this way covered the whole body. The single
cloaks,

frivolity in this

garment was

was cut

that the cape

away under the arms to show the dress.


The headgear of German women took various
shapes: a nun-like coif (like the one worn by
Catherine von Born, the woman who married
by

Luther), a square shape supported

and there were hats shaped

German women,

like

wire frame,

like a mitre or a halo.

many women in the north of

wore their hair long, gathered in a thick plait


which hung down the back, or else in two plaits

Italy,

Henry

II

of France. Clouet. British Museum, London

wound around
at all

to

influenced by this exotic fashion, and continued

keep their national costume, which was more

suitable for their climate

women wore

and way of

life.

yards of material, so that the female

very sturdy. The bodice was close


rigid

In

Germany
many

long heavy dresses made with

by busks, according

to

body appeared

fitting

but not held

French fashion. The

the head. 'Hair

feminine adornment.
fall

on

their shoulders; this

who

wrote Luther,
needed

women

most beautiful

is

very pleasant

God had

he believed that

women away from

rearing

and they are good for nothing.'

In England, as elsewhere in Europe,

neckline was modest: round or square, or V-shaped

sight',

women

that

felt

exclusively for 'motherhood, kit-

chen and church. Take


their families,

the

nevertheless

strict discipline;

destined

is

women who let their hair

like

women

were

fond of finery. The farthingale was fashionable and


also the
it

French

looked

like

like

bourrelet,

which became

an enormous plate; and

so large that

looked

skirts

drums. Necklines, previously wide and square

under the reign of Mary Tudor, were veiled by

chemise which came high round the neck, and completed

by

a ruff like a mill

layers, or else pleated

The sleeves were

over

wheel,

made of

metal frame like

puffed like

little

also puffed

ruffle

of lace

from shoulder

with embroidery and

at the wrists.

to wrist

braids.

wore two wings, attached

136

II

of Spain. Detail

William of Orange. Detail

fitting

They were

and embellished

Sometimes

at the shoulders,

women

and made

by metal wire. In
France, where they had originated, these wings were
called conques, and from them a wide veil, rectangular
or oval, fell to the ground. Shoes were closed and
shaped like slippers, and were made either of cloth
or of leather, and brightly coloured. Cloaks, which
in very thin material, supported

Philip

a fan.

balloons near the

armhole, and then narrowed and became close

with the usual

several

were

little

were generally

used,

which came

oval, with sleeves

to the elbow.

The magnificence of feminine attire, which increased as time went by, was partly due to the great
and the rich materials that were

variety of colours

Cloth from Milan, Genoese velvet, gold

available.

from Florence, Naples and also from


Pans, where Italian artisans had been imported, were
popular throughout Europe.
and silver

fabrics

Queen
Tudor in

Elizabeth

almost

women,

all gifts

owned two thousand


from her subjects who knew
she

of her love of clothes and her


fifty-three the queen,
ing,

who

who

thrift.

At the age of

loved dancing and hunt-

used to spit and to swear like a soldier, and

to beat her

temper, was
special

Mary

and bony, unquestionably the most

elegant of English
dresses,

half-sister

1558, at the age of twenty-five. Tall, red-

thin

haired,

succeeded her

fists
still

on the

table in frequent bursts

very open to

flattery

and had

of
a

fondness for elaborate dresses: during her

which were stiffened with blue or saffron


became enormous.
Elizabeth was a mistress of diplomacy. When the

reign ruffs,
starch,

Spanish ambassador visited her to complain about


the behaviour of Francis Drake,

who

had seized

cargo of gold, taken from the treasure ship Cacafuego,


she feigned great surprise,

though

it

was well known

had financed the enterprise. She


decided to go aboard his ship the Golden Hind in
that she

Below
Below

left:

herself

Louis XIII.

right:

Anonymous

Vincenzo Gonzaga. Anonymous.

Uffizi

Gallery, Florence
Right: Philip

II.

Titian. National

Museum, Naples

U7

When, how-

person, ostensibly to reprimand him.


ever, he knelt before her, she

bestowed

knighthood
on him. The same ambiguous statesmanship was
a

displayed in her treatment of her cousin,

of Scots; Elizabeth saved her

life

was

for seventeen years; eventually she


finally

Mary Queen

and kept her

in jail

and

tried

beheaded, but immediately after the execution

Elizabeth denied that she had ordered her death.


Elizabeth never married, though her

romantically linked with


Essex.

with

It

two men,

name was

Leicester and

has been suggested also that she was in love

Walter Raleigh, the great explorer,

Sir

who

named the region of America he discovered 'Virginia'


after the

Virgin Queen.

Masculine costume

came very

refined

at this

and

period in England be-

elegant:

doublets

were

decorated with precious buttons; rich trunk hose was

worn;

sleeves were heavily embroidered; coatwere cut so that they fell down the wearer's
back, and were often bordered with fur. Men's hair,
which was worn short, their beards and moustaches
were often perfumed.
In other countries fashions were similar, strongly
sleeves

influenced by the Spanish, but modified also accord'Portrait

of a Ladv'. Caron. Alte Pinakothek, Munich

ing to the

demands of climate and national temperamen still wore the long robe

ment. In Hungary

buttoned in front, and pulled in

wide

was of Byzantine

Detail,

showing fashion

with precious stones

for

heavy necklaces mounted

at the waist

leather belt studded with silver and gold,


origin.

which

Hungarian men wore cloth

Right: Portrait of Catherine Parr, sixth wife of Henry


Hans Holbein the Younger. Novarro Collection.

VIII.

Above: Detail, showing hands laden with


important fashion accessory

138

with

rings,

an

wx

i*a* -

berets with upturned brims, adorned with plumes.

to

Women

one's back

skirts

had multicoloured embroidery on

and aprons and they hid

their hair in caps.

in

Europe. In those times to wear one's fortune on

was perhaps the best way both to keep it


and to show off one's possessions. Similarly up to

safe

through

In this century a passion for lace spread

Europe

their

it was called merletto in Italy, spitze (points)


Germany, and dentelle in France, because it was
;

recent times peasant

women in the Balkans wore their

dowry sewn

in a

to advantage

on their bosom.

handkerchief which they displayed

Women in the sixteenth

finished off with a pattern of small points or teeth.

century wore very long gold necklaces, with pearls

Already known in Egyptian times (where it was more

or precious pendants or medallions. These

like

embroidery on very

anglaise),

lace as

fine linen, a

we know

it

Christopher Froschauer, in

is

his

type of broderie

the

work of great

masterpieces

Italian in origin:

created

book on

Cameos and

fashion

Benvenuto

artists like

of

were often

Cellini,

who

workmanship.

intricate

emeralds and rubies, diamonds

coral,

printed in Zurich in 1536, stated that the art of lace

and enamelled jewels amounted to great fortunes,

made with bobbins had been introduced

which might change the whole course of a war, as


had happened a century before. Charles VIII, King of

to Switzerfact,

two

bobbin and

also

land by Venetian merchants. There are, in

methods of making

lace

with

two methods were often used


together, for example in point lace, which was composed of strips of lace made with bobbins and joined
to each other by needle stitches as fine as gossamer. In
England, where the Virgin Queen wore extremely
with

a needle; the

high, stiffened lace collars, this fashion

was

called

was known as 'an English


lace on their attire.
Jewellery, the conspicuous symbol of wealth, was
worn by the nobility, particularly in Spain, where the
'French', while in France

exaggeration'.

Men

also

it

had

wealthy appeared bedecked

like idols,

with

a profu-

sion of gold, pearls and precious stones imported

faraway lands. Laden with gold chains,

from

their dresses

encrusted with gems, their fingers covered with


rings,

Spanish grandees carried on their persons the

immense

fortunes that

Elizabeth of Austria,

came from

Queen of

the

New World

France, wife of Charles

IX. Frans Pourbus. Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris

France, during his Italian campaign, did not have

enough money

pay

to

troops and meet the

his

expenses of the journey. Fortunately, the Marchesa

Bianca del Monferrato,

him, gave up

meet

able to

Hair

all

who was deeply in love with

her jewels to help

him and he was

his obligations.

styles in this

period tended to

make

look smaller; the eyebrows were shaved

the head

off,

the high

forehead was emphasised with the hair drawn back

and often

At the time of Henry IV

plaited.

powder

usually sprinkled with scented

hair

was

(middle-class

women would use flour). A stiff cap from which


hung a veil was worn, or else a round cap on hair that
was parted in the middle and gathered in plaits or
curled around the temples. The narrow-brimmed
toque, on which, in accordance with the French mode,
was placed a twist of silk decorated with plumes, was
very fashionable; also a felt hat over which a
coloured shawl was draped. Small hats with large
brims drooping down on one side like a dog's ear,
were fashionable for men. There were straw hats,
turned up in front and behind and hats made of the
;

white bark of

lime

tree,

adorned with

fringes,

braids and peacock or ostrich feathers. For hunting,

*fe-

were made of leather and shaped like hoods,


often with woollen tassels at the temples.
hats

With

knowledge of the customs of

increasing

many

different peoples,

more

polished code of manners evolved.

so

and the spread of culture,

one's hands before sitting

down

at

Washing

meals became

was shared among many


were thoroughly wiped before
drink was served in a ewer with

obligatory, and if one glass


guests,

the

drinking.

lips

If a

several spouts,

it

was considered

polite to put one's

"

lips to

the spout that had not been used

ceding guest.
Right:

The

the pre-

Portrait ot the Princess of Eboli wearing the

universally

popular

Infantado Collection

140

by

Countess of Valentinois, in order

Spanish

ruff.

Sanchez

Coello.

^r

4K7
- .'

-'.:

/=

v
.

-r..^vA;

*^

r3

UI

to

show her own importance, drank from

the

same

gentleness.

No

court,

however

women; no

brilliant,

can nourish

spout that had been used by the King of France and

without

the Cardinal of Ferrara; this caused scandal and

courteous, nor undertake chivalrous adventures,

among

the courtiers present.

ness to pick

and

kiss

it

It

up bread which had

before putting

was expected

it

in

was

envy

of polite-

a sign

from the table


one's mouth. A person
fallen

to cross himself if he sneezed.

is

not

moved by

woman

woman.

the influence of a

glione taught also that in order to

must be feminine

imitating

These were the rules of etiquette for daily

courtier can be brave and

fulfil

to the

if

he

Casti-

her function,

full,

and avoid

men in behaviour, manners, speech or dress.

but

She must develop graceful movements of her body,

Baldassar de Castiglione, in his Cortegiano, described

and speak gently. She should study music, dancing,

in detail

what

life,

the behaviour of gentlemen should be.

According to him the

first

requisite

was

position,

because unless one were born into the upper


it

would be

difficult to

classes,

acquire manners and spontan-

eous grace of body and mind. Therefore the aristocracy seemed to

him the repository of good manners,


taste. The education

exemplary behaviour and good

of a gentleman should consist of the study of the

arts

of war: enthusiasm for the pursuits of peace should


not be pushed to the point of weakening
character as warriors.

men

142

brutal, but

Too many

women

men in their

wars, he

could turn

felt,

men

make

towards

literature

and the

art

of entertaining

can attain that inner beauty which

in this

way

she

the object and

is

the stimulus of true love.

With

the

end of the sixteenth century, the period

of the Renaissance

may

be said to

which had the novelty and


styles

close, a

creativity, in

of dress and architecture,

art

and

period
its

literature,

new
of a

new civilisation. This period heralded the beginning


of a new attitude towards life, a new sensibility which
delighted in
sis,

pomp, movement, and dramatic empha-

and was characterised by

artifice

the

a love

Baroque movement.

of mystery and

tailor

at

work.

Engraving.

Seventeenth

The
Seventeenth Century

century

t'OSVlDEVM ADIYTOlUiM M L ViNV

^
f

'<V^

ry

tit-

MDCIU

*^-T
M.VXXXIII
6ji.Seft.

Sre

M
-

s<,

?*^

,j

^-^ *

ftfe

41

^J^TTy^-

3be

IP1

JB
v. ***.*'

~~ T

\a

'Costume

is

the mirror of history.'

XIV

So Louis

pomp

of the French court of


which anticipated modern
of the function of costume to clothe the

defended the excessive

century, people were free to dress as they wished,

though the Spanish influence

predominated.

still

that time, a statement

There were

definitions

Spanish fashion that had conquered Europe in the

body, and also expressed the

artistic, social

and even

economic aspects of an epoch. Costume is the record


of a way of life, the expression of a society and of a
civilisation;

it

reveals the character of a people. In

its

The

mirror, the great epochs of history are reflected.

study of costume has frequently suggested an explana-

of events,

tion

when no

causes and origins

knowledge of

exact

their

was known.

and

stiff.

From

adorned with

line,

band

chin,

came

and fanning out over the shoulders. The round

shape was obtained by using several layers of linen

a large

were used, and

like a fan. In

order to keep

number of superimposed

also a metallic

layers

frame inserted between

were starched, and the technique of

the ruff. Ruffs

starching

became almost an

starch

of

A Gascon of vigorous stock with an attractive

court,

where Henry

a pale

III, it is

the starching of his ruffs.


called Miss

him

the blue starch

to restore the finances

of the

State, rebuild the

and roads destroyed by wars and reorganise

agriculture (the only


a" Agriculture).

book he ever read was

He

the

issued the Edict of Nantes,

which authorised the Protestant religion, gave freedom of speech to Protestants and thus ended religious

art:

at

blue colour was used

not the greatest king of France, had

which made him successful with women,


Henry III a country weakened
by corruption, by religious conflict, by political
disorder. His intelligence and fine judgment enabled

strife in

linen

the exaggeration of the true ruff, attached to the neck-

he had inherited from

Theatre

fine

and always wide

mere pleated
neck from collar to

personality

villages

the

each pleat, which supported, stretched and stiffened

At the beginning of the seventeenth century dress


continued to be sober, just as Henry IV, one of the
if

lace,

the/raise, a

which encircled the

ruff,

made of extremely

previous century. Ruffs were

one over the other, pleated

Henry IV

desired.

thousand variations of the

linen cloth, often

this rigid,

greatest

said,

at

only

rice

the French

supervised in person

Then an

Turner invented

first

a starch

English

woman

of a pale yellow

two colours became immediately


They came to have political significance as

colour, and these

popular.

pale yellow

was considered

a Papist

dye, while the

was adopted by the Huguenots.

In

Eng-

land yellow starch was abandoned

when

was accused, perhaps

of poisoning

Engraving. Callot.

1617.

unjustly,

Bertarelli

its

inventor
Sir

Collection, Milan

France.

Simple

in his

never paid

manners, brave and untiring, he

much

attention to dress, but left these

Court and their effemiyoung men. Excessively simple in his dress, he


was often blamed by his courtiers because he wore
garments that were patched at the elbows. After his
divorce from the 'la Reine Margot' he married Maria
de' Medici, the daughter of the Grand Duke of Tuscany, a much more polished person than himself.
Maria de' Medici, in whose veins flowed the blood of
pleasures to the ladies of the

nate

Catherine Sforza, the belligerent


the Renaissance

who

woman

warrior of

had defended the stronghold of

from the Papal troops, had, however, more self-

Forli

confidence than intelligence, and desired that her


Italian favourites

should take over the government,

and that she should be allowed to live an extravagant


life at

the court of

In the first years

King Henry.

of his reign there was no prevailing

fashion: continuing the tradition of the sixteenth

Left:

Queen

collars

Passe.

high

Elizabeth of England

back and open


1603. Engraving
at the

set
at

the fashion tor

stir}"

the front. Crispin de

Following pages: Portrait of the artist and his first wife, Isabella Brandt. Rubens
(
irca [609. Bavarian State Collection, Munich

V
c

m
^:^.

~v~
r

<?$ir.

4.

&

ZLtL

-.

*L B
*\-

i**

V
i

Thomas Overbury, and was beheaded

at

the

Tower

of London. Miss Turner went to the block wearing


a dress

woman

with
kept

yellow

pale yellow ruff

ruff, after

which no elegant

in her

wardrobe.

fashion,
plete

and condemned the wearer

immobility; although

it

comworn by

to almost

could be

women with leisure, it was very uncomfortable for


women in the humbler walks of life. Because of this,

The Spanish way of dressing, although sumptuous,


was very uncomfortable, not only because of the

when Europe was overwhelmed by that fever of wars


which for many long years tormented Germany,

which imprisoned the neck, but also because of


the fullness of the skirts, supported by the farthingale
in such a way that walking was difficult; and because

France, Holland and England, the Spanish fashions

ruff

Men were the


women stubbornly

began to die out, especially for men.

of the very tight bodice, which came below the

abandon the
went on wearing it

natural waist in the front, with a basque, the seams of

the

which were covered with braids, strands of pearls,


and ribbons. This was an extremely expensive

little

first to

ruff,

for

though

some

time.

few followed

example set by Elizabeth of England and wore the


'Stuart' collar, gathered and stiffened, high at
the back of the neck but open in front with a rather
deep neckline, which was often veiled.

Portrait of Eleonora Gonzaga. Frans Pourbus. Ducal


Palace, Venice

Louis XIII
In the time

of Louis XIII, the ruff changed into the

falling collar,

although

which

many

fell

limply on the shoulders,

older people continued to be faithful

to the ruff which

had caused so many scandals

in the

days of their youth. Spanish dresses in the seventeenth

century were almost always black, with only

touch

by gold and
As cumbersome as these dresses were
styles, often composed of stiff little plaits, as

of white

at

the neck, and brightened

silver braids.

the hair

we

can see in the paintings of Velasquez.

was indeed in the reign of Louis XIII that French


began to be differentiated from the Spanish.
After Richelieu's edict had forbidden the importation of braid and lace from Italy and Belgium, cosIt

fashions

tumes became more sober and more elegant.

Women

Maria de' Medici. Rubens. Prado, Madrid. Left: Lady


wearing an ornate ruff. Van Dyck. Gallery of the
Academy of S. Luca, Rome.

148

wore an embroidered shirt, two petticoats, one


under-garment in two pieces (a bodice and skirt) and
a dress also in two pieces, open in front to reveal the
underskirt. The apron, in lace or silk, was often a
sophisticated accessory. Sleeves became very important, enriched by bizarre ornaments, with cuffs of
wide lace turned up on the forearm. The collar, no

the French favoured pale shades in


the rainbow, and these
fanciful

lace.

The

farthingale slowly

the colours of

were often given bizarre and

names. Fashionable shades were

'leaf colour

browngreen, gay-green, lawn green; and even more fanciful names like 'laughing monkey', 'kiss-me-my-

or 'gazelle colour', sea-green, bud-green,

love', 'wasted time' or 'mortal sin'.

Another fashion was born: the fashion

longer of the high 'Stuart' type, lay on the shoulders

with the lightness of

all

for false

beauty spots, which had even more fantastic names

disappeared, and the underskirt, stiffened by a frame

than the colours, and were bought in Paris

of coarse hemp, had

a conical shape, the

Perle des matches' in the

hips being obtained

by bunching up the

width

at

the

While Spanish fashion had preferred dark colours,

Portrait of a lady

showing the more severe

style

Rue

St Denis.

They were

called 'passion' if applied at the outer corner

skirt.

of ruff won)

at 'La

of the

eye; 'finery' if they were placed in the middle of the

in

northern Europe. Jan van Ravensteyn

149

cheek; 'boldness'
they were placed
try' if

if

they adorned

at the

a nostril; 'kiss' if

corner of the mouth; 'coque-

placed directly on the lower

expressed

a desire for

lip.

This fashion

elegance, but also served to

hide an unsightly mole or pimple. Patches were

of velvet or

silk,

and were kept

carried in the handbag.

The

ruff

was followed by a French fashion for


which lay limply on the shoulders.

falling collars,

of Unknown Man'. Detail. Terborch.


National Gallery, London

'Portrait

150

made

in special little boxes,

The wish

to appear original at

to another fashion

which

lasted

time the fashion for tinting the


:

all

costs

gave origin

only a very short


lips

green or black.

The son of Maria de' Medici, Louis XIII usually


wore a doublet ending in a point at the front, with
sleeves

slit

was adorned with a


metallic point. He wore no ruff

vertically; each

ribbon ending in

slit

but a round or square falling collar,

hemmed

with

into boots shaped like funnels

The doublet was later replaced by

coat fastened

ings.

with buttons or loops, seamless, with

pointed col-

trimmed with

lace.

lar

made of

lace,

slashed sleeves.

Men

close fitting than before,

with

and very

wore breeches more

full

bottom, and the seams adorned by


bands of braid. These became longer, and were fitted
lace frills at the

Portrait of

Burgomaster Bas and

his family,

From

the

which hid the stock-

boots emerged the linen linings

lace.

By 1650 people no

longer followed the Spanish

fashion, but French fashion exerted

its

influence

over Europe, with the exception of Holland,


conservative country. Dutch

showing fashions worn by three

women

all

very

preferred their

different generations. Santvoort.

Amster-

dam Museum

51

staid old

costume, puffed up on the hips not because

of the farthingale, which they had never adopted,


but because the

skirt itself

was

only bizarre feature was an odd


the forehead,

made of

silk

The
worn on

fully gathered.
little

hat

and plumes and shaped

somewhat like a tulip, the flower which became the


national symbol of the country. Native to Turkey,
tulips were first imported into Holland by Ogier
Gislain de Busbecq,

ambassador of Ferdinand of

which came down


lace

to the knee,

hanging over the

calves. (These

target of Moliere's irony.)


silk

and were laden with

stockings and court shoes, but

for a time that the fashion for boots

Roi

In fact the

lined with silk

sensational

bankruptcies.

It

became necessary

to

formulate a law which put an end to speculation in


tulips,

but the flower nevertheless continued to

feature

in

embroideries,

paintings

and furniture

decoration in Holland.

XIV

seemed

was coming back.

and adorned with gold

cause Louis

and caused sudden wealth and

it

splendid pair of seamless boots of Levantine leather,

girls,

Louis

appeared in court wearing

Soleil

fashion lasted only as long as the

marriageable

when

married Maria Theresa the Infanta of Spain,

Austria to the Court of Suleiman the Magnificent.


passion for tulips swept the country, and prices
were often extremely high. They were quoted in
the Exchange, were accepted as part of the dowry of

were often the

Boots were replaced by

XIV

returned to wearing

and high-heeled shoes,

a style

lilies.

This

honeymoon, bestockings

silk

which he never aban-

doned again. This was probably because stockings


showed his legs, which were perfect, and high-heeled
shoes allowed

was

him

small, being

to

add inches to

under

his stature, for

he

five feet six inches.

These little shoes were made of silk or velvet,


embroidered or encrusted with gems; the edge of the
sole

and the heels were dyed bright

Women's

red.

shoes were not unlike the men's, but their shoes had

white rather than

Louis

Elegant

XIV

French fashion, under the guidance of Louis XIV,


abandoned simplicity and became

more and more extravagant and sumptuous. Gentle-

men began

to decorate their clothes with ribbons

and embroidery; they adopted

full

short trousers,

The wife of the Lord Mayor of London. Wenceslaus Hollar. 1644. Right: The fashions for the ruff
and the deep collar overlapped for some years.
Le Costume historique. M. A. Racinet

152

women added a third skirt to the two they

wore under

the Roi Soleil,

scarlet heels.

their dresses; this

was open

in front,

on
Very often this third skirt lengthened
into a train, which had to be carried by a page. These
three skirts had somewhat fanciful names the inner
one was called la fidele and was the jupe de besoin,
pleated and puffed

the hips with knotted ribbons,

pins or buckles.

adorned with ribbons and embroideries sewn


favourite colour of the

woman's beloved;

one, the friponne, was the jupe de parade

in the

the second

et d" eclat,

in

cloth of gold and silver, heavily embroidered; the


third

one was

known

as la

modeste or

la secrete

accord-

ing to the Dictionnaire des Precieuses. These 'Precieuses',

who were

satirised in the

work of Moliere,

Madame

frequented the salon of

de Chevreuse,

where all the gossip of court and town was exchanged with eager malice.

Men

were often more frivolous in their dress than


women. Their garments were often decorated with
more than three hundred bows, and they also wore
brocades, embroidery in gold and silver, silks that
were extravagantly expensive they cost 'the eyes
out of your head,' wrote Madame de Scvigne in one
of her

letters,

describing a

tres

beau justacorps of her

son-in-law, which had cost a thousand

on

their cloaks,

shaped

like capes,

cade rather than wool,

men

livres.

loved trimmings of

braid and rich embroidery, often spending

sums on

this

Even

and made of bro-

enormous

extravagance.

was passed by Mazarin which forbade the use of gold and silver not only on clothes,
In 1656 an edict

Medallion portraits on a wardrobe. Anonymous.


Seventeenth century. National Museum, Nuremberg

but also on coaches, in an attempt to curb the debts


and enormous waste of the times. Mazarin brought
on himself the hatred of the elegant world for having
tried to

curb luxury, and he had to repeal

his

laws

Engraving from Le Costume historique. M. A. Raemet.


Left: English lady wearing a dress with deep lace collar
and skirt gathered at the hips. Wenceslaus Hollar. 1640.
National

Museum, Nuremberg

Following page: Fabric with design

cream-coloured
Museum, Turin

on

silk.

in

Seventeenth

magenta velvet
century. Civk

153

154

Young Englishman. Nicholas

Milliard. Victoria

and Albert

Museum.

ondon

ss-

Right:

The heavy and cumbersome Spanish

style

of dress

appears in a portrait of Marianna of Austria. Velasquez.

Prado, Madrid

because of the violent protests of the

made

artisans,

who

the braids and embroideries, the buckles and

buttons,

wove

the cloth of gold and silver, and

feared that Mazarin's edicts

who

would be the ruin of their

trade and put an end to their prosperity.

During the very long reign of Louis XIV the


changed several times, and each wave spread

fashions

across the

whole of Europe, and sometimes even


by means of fashion dolls, half or a

across the ocean,


third the size

The Empress Margarita of


Madrid

Austria, del

Mazo. Prado,

of the

human body, and

every minute detail correct.

Rue

dressed with

They came from

the

Honore, and were the only means by which


news of the latest fashions could pass through the
St

by the war between France and England. From 1672, however, fashion news had also
been spread through a newspaper, Le Mercure Galant,
barrier created

Dress was severely formal

at

the Spanish Court. 'The Infanta Margarita'. Velasquez. Prado,

Madrid

?;

2&

Mllil-

&

w
l

58

4uL*T

cobbler.

Abraham Bosse

from Vienna to Venice, from


from London to Brussels, could be
informed of the fact that doublets were now long and
so that elegant people

Berlin to Madrid,

finely pleated, or

whatever fashion's

whim

latest

might have become.


of two years (between 1672 and 1674)
the fashion for ornaments on sleeves changed seven
In the course

or eight times: they were buttoned to the wrist;

turned up with coloured

ruffles;

open the whole

length of the arm; loaded with lace and ribbons;

decorated with

little

buttons very close to each other,

or ornamented with a double circlet of lace on the

forearm and the wrist.


Hats during those years did not change very

much

they were wide-brimmed, with a gold cord round


the

crown. During the summer of 1672 gold-

embroidered gloves were fashionable;

in the

winter

of 1674 they were made of dog-skin and covered


with fur from the same animal.
Le Mercure Galant stipulated that necklines should

no longer be boat-shaped as they were when Maria


Theresa was a young bride, but now were more
accentuated

at the

skirts a la Psyche,

back;

it

also spread the fashion for

which were

soft

and

full

and flow-

ing; and cloaks in Indian linen or white or red

Women's

stockings,

made of silk, were

or flesh coloured at that time, and their

had

a square tip and were

made of black

silk.

either white
little

shoes

velvet or o\

same fabric as the dress. Amber necklaces and


diamond ornaments became the rage, as well as
the

The Gallery of the Palais Royal,


Paris. Abraham Bosse. Engraving
Left

painted linen fans studded with


attached to

them

silk sachets

gems and having

containing perfumed

[59

Men

had swords, breeches

were

tight

knee,

and

important.

fitting

sleeves

Portrait

at

the

became
of the

Archduke Albert of Austria.


Rubens. Art Museum, Sao
Paulo, Brazil

60

m
essences. Furs

many

continued to be fashionable, and

animals were sacrificed to this desire for elegance


sable, otter,
cat,

marten, fox of every kind, wolf, lamb,

hare and rabbit.

Sometimes men's doublets were lined with


Muffs were worn by men, hanging from their
these

were

also

of fur,

Muffs had originated

tiger,

in

fur.

belts:

panther, otter or beaver.

Venice

in the fifteenth cen-

tury but only during the reign of Louis

XIV

did they

become fashionable throughout the world. They


were made of silk or brocade, lined with fur,
fastened with buttons of crystal or gold, and covered

with beads. At
subsequently

first

only courtesans wore them but

respectable

women

took them up.

Men's muffs, worn only partly to protect

their

hands

were usually rather small, often in


black or grey satin and lined with fur. Women wore
from the

cold,

various shapes according to the fashion of the

ment, and sometimes only used them


coquetry.

The muff was very

ceal the face in delicate

were large enough

From 1674
porary

mo-

of their

useful indeed to con-

moments. Sometimes they

to conceal a lapdog.

to 1678

standstill,

as part

French fashion came to

owing

tem-

to royal edicts forbidding

luxury and waste, in an attempt to restore the finances

of a nation wasted by continuous wars. Later the edicts

were forgotten and the creators of fashion launched


the typical late seventeenth-century costume.

the elegant
his

man wore

body from

at the chest to

Below.

long coat which clung to

the neck to the knees, but

allow

Now

glimpse of

was open

sumptuously

Gloves were an important fashion accessory.

English gloves of the seventeenth century. Victoria and

Albert

Museum, London

Right: A wide sash worn over the shoulder carried the


sword, and ribbons gathered the breeches at the knee.
Portrait of Charles I'. Detail. Van Dyck. Louvre

101

embroidered

shirt.

Round his neck

he wore

a linen collar rectangular in shape,

into

two and

fell

down

masculine accessory had

a cravat

Hair Styles

which divided

almost to the waist. This

a military origin

it

was part

of the costume of the mercenaries from Croatia,

who

had been employed by various European sovereigns


since the sixteenth century.

These Croatian troops

century later formed part of the

and from them stemmed the

army of Louis XIV,

new

masculine fashion.

The most

typical hair style of the 1690s

was the one

launched involuntarily by Mademoiselle de Fon-

XIV had fallen in love with her when


was only eighteen, and he insisted on having her
always near him when riding through the woods on
tanges. Louis

she

hunting expeditions.
her appearance in an

On one such hunt, she made


amazon costume covered with

men in the seventeenth century wore


swords even when not at war, hanging from a heavy

embroideries and with a fanciful coiffure consisting

scarf which crossed over the coat

dered her

Elegant

from one shoulder.


The close-fitting breeches, fastened at the knee by a
garter, barely showed below the coat. At hip level a
rather wide ribbon belt was worn. Earlier, in the
1660s, they had adopted a mode which was German
rather than French in origin: Rhinegraves or petti-

coat-breeches as they were called in England.

They

were immensely wide in the leg and were pleated or


gathered on to a waistband and fell like a divided
skirt to the knee; below were flounces of lace.
For women the corsage was open and laced across
the front with ribbons.

From

the bodice

full

sleeves belled out, finishing in a ruffle of lace.


de parade,

another
rosettes,

made of heavy

robe,

short

La

robe

was covered by
open and secured at the hips by diamond

bows

material,

or circular draperies.

Engravings of {from left to right) a housewife, a gardener,


woman in mourning, a minister and a woman with a

bonnet. Centre: Woman carrying a fan. 1670.


Strasbourg Almanack. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

large

162

when a sudden wind disoryoung lady simply tied it up with


a ribbon. The effect was so attractive that the King
begged her not to alter it during the day. Mademoiselle did not need asking twice, and from then on
of ribbons and plumes;
hair, the

the ladies of the court arranged the curls that had been

hanging on

their

neck and ears with ribbons, plumes

by wires.
Another hair style which was all the rage was one
which Madame de Sevigne described to her daughter
thus: 'The hair is parted at the sides and arranged in
round, soft curls, which must not fall lower than an

and

little

caps with high crowns stiffened

inch below the ears.

with bunches

Women

The

effect

is

young and

pretty,

of hair held at either side of the face.'

did not hesitate to allow male hair-dressers

to dress their hair, in spite of the fact that in 1605 the

clergy had threatened to excommunicate

women

Illustration

on

a fan,

showing

mock

battle in Florence. Callot. 1619. Bertarelli Collection,

Milan

yfortm

^G>

fc

I
1

4.

w
Jcsnmc

if

tii

pi

it.

>^/A

11

irf/r

/Ml

pirtc
Z<

tin

rnn, J^i

muf

[63

who

allowed themselves to have their hair done by


men. There was much use of false hair, and the wigs
and postiches that Queen Margot had used to hide
her baldness came back into fashion.
Wigs have throughout history been used for such
a purpose,

but Louis

XIV in his early years


When this began to

excellent head of hair.

adopted

a peruke,

every fashionable

even

and so great was

man

in

he

fail

his prestige that

Europe began

he had no need of

if

had an

wear one

to

This strange fashion

it.

more than a century.


The wigs worn by Louis XIV were always very
high to make him look taller. Wigs became so popu-

lasted for

lar that

new

Colbert, the Minister of Finance, imposed a

on the wig-makers'

tax

way

trade. In this

the

very heavy burden of importing cut hair from abroad

was

the export of finished wigs. These

set against

were

colour of the natural hair of the

at first the

wearer, and according to their shape they had different names.

shaven and
It

of
Venetian courtesan. Forabosco. Uffizi Gallery, Florence

was

The Roi

this fashion

in the reign

Soleil

was himself clean-

too he imposed on Europe.

of Louis

XIV that the formation

dressmakers' guild was authorised. Before

dresses

were made

at

this,

home or else by tailors towards


;

the end of the seventeenth century Monsieur

RegMonsieur Gautier, the most famous fashion


creators of their time, were replaced by Madame
nault and

>mj

Charpentier and

couraged

Madame

Villeneuve.

They

en-

their clients to lengthen their skirts,

to

shorten them, to pad them, to load them with gold

them with braid or embroider


motifs. They suggested new colours

embroideries, to trim

them with floral

grey, red, blue, yellow, scarlet,

Dutch enamelled
Victoria and Albert

Charles

scissors

case.

Seventeenth century.

Museum, London

of England and Henrietta of France. Van Dyck.

Pitti Palace,

Florence

brown, purple; and

used precious materials like damask, shiny fabrics


like satin, soft fabrics like velvet, stiff

ones like

taffeta.

They

and gleaming

replaced the palatina, the

silk

by Elizabeth Charlotte of
Bavaria, which was wound round the neck, with an
embroidered fichu, or a lace tie. This lace tie was long
and narrow, wound round the neck, crossed on the
breast and ended in a buttonhole in the bodice. It was
or fur scarf, launched

called a Steinkirk, as a

reminder of the victory

won

by the Marechal de Luxembourg over the Prince of


Orange. The tie was often made of the French lace
called Alencon, after the small town where Richelieu,

with the help of an expert, Mademoiselle Gilbert,

had founded the


ing of lace

tradesmen

first

great lace industry.

from abroad was

who

The import-

restricted to help the

had been almost ruined bv

his earlier

Olimpia Aldobrandini wearing modified Spanish


with ribboned sleeves. Anonymous. Doria
Pamphili Gallery, Rome
Right:

style dress

164

mm

K.

V
msnt

'aMI

im\

.**" Jf
<

\1

I
li

ft

'.;

'

edicts.

was

it

The

passion for lace was such that not only

used for the robes and

shirts specially

made

for

was even used to embellish the bath


tub. Fashionable also were sleeves made of two or
three layers of Alencon lace, which were called les
the bath, but

it

engageants. Lace

was used

to adorn Spanish leather

gloves or the taffeta scarfs used to protect the

when

it

Male
ing,

tailors exercised their

ingenuity in lengthencoats.

imaginative use of pockets, increasing

tally,

to four,

worn by men

and cutting them

They made
them from

vertically,

horizon-

and obliquely. Sometimes pockets were simple,

coat and had been

now made

women.

of

made of the same

were

material,

different fabrics, lighter in colour

ming. Lace was


slash'

this

was

velvet,

and

and they

also used for shirts, for the 'scissor

model which had

braid like the pockets of the trumpet players in a

much

the

enriched with a

a slit in front

fine lace border. Later, breeches

made of

band and therefore called a la trompette.


Breeches, which before had not shown below the

well as

were also made in white, green or crimson damask,


and decorated with embroidery, lace or braid trim-

sometimes they were covered with embroidery or


military

as

of a Gentleman'. Maratta. National Gallery,


Rome. Centre: 'Portrait of Agatha Gelvinck'. Dirk
Dirckszoon. Amsterdam. Extreme right: Portrait of
Colbert. Bibliotheque Nationale
'Portrait

embroidered; sometimes

rained.

widening or shortening men's

two

wig

Right: Lace collars were

same material

as

were once more

became

the coat, but

shorter again.

Louis XIV, with his love of finery, often inter-

vened personally
another.

As

to guide fashion in

one direction or

symbol of mourning

for the death of

he ordered that coats

his father-in-law Philip IV,

should no longer have slashed sleeves, and should be

He

lengthened to the knee.

actually passed a

law for-

bidding the wearing of slashed sleeves except by


himself and his courtiers.

and

silver coats,

which he

when

and

He

also

continued to wear gold

founded the 'patent

coats'

distributed to seventy of his favourites:

they wore these blue coats with gold

em-

broidery they could follow the King without needing any further permission.

The chosen bodyguard

of the King was the corps of mounted musketeers,

which

at first dressed in a

gold cross on the chest.

new uniform,

kind of tabard, red with a

Then

a blue tabard

the grand

with

roi

ordered

a silver cross.

In the seventeenth century there

were no great

between masculine and feminine fashion


so far as the materials were concerned, nor in the
taste for jewels, accessories and excessive decoration.

differences

were comparatively simple. Men usually


carried their hat under their arm, so that it did not
interfere with their wig. Hats were of various shapes

Only

hats

there

were

felt

hats,

with wide upturned brims,

adorned with plumes; hats shaped

like

cones with

rigid brims and white plumes; hats with low crowns


and upturned brims and plumes; lop-sided hats to
balance the long single curl falling on to the right
shoulder of the wearer; three-cornered hats and even

two-cornered hats with

silver

and gold braided edges.

The three-cornered hat was worn much larger by


Venetian women, but French women, and indeed
Portrait of
loot. 1628

Amelia of Solms and

child. Detail.

A. Kers-

women

of that epoch, were sparing in


their buying of hats, usually preferring not to wear
any, except for a small kerchief of white lace (or black
all

elegant

Right: Venetian lace collar. Seventeenth century

166

IBM.

wfrA
Jtf/
SPU^^S
/

>

_ N

y<" rHLi*

TW

<**+*

"

c-*y7v2

'

M' *;

1*

L-/

fY

TLA m

4
/

^
i

m
,-

J^

for

widows) with

head,

held

stiff

countries did

a point coming down on the foreby wire. Only in the Northern

women

times shaped like a cone,

bon

for married

cap, for

widows

crown, usually

women;
;

or

some-

stay faithful to the hat:

made
or

in silk

all

and with

wide-brimmed and with

in a dark colour for

In the seventeenth century

a rib-

in white, like a nun's

we

all

other

see the

a small

women.

beginning

of an awareness of fashion for children, copied from


adults but slightly simpler.

and lace were used for

no

little

ruffs or farthingales

were

full

Of

course embroidery

bonnets and

collars,

were worn, though

and long. As long ago

as

but

skirts

the thirteenth

century the question of dressing children had been

documents of that time we find descripof girls' capes and boys' shirts; sumptuary laws

discussed. In
tions

passed at that period to curb excessive luxury,

still

allowed boys up to the age of twelve and unmarried


described Beatrice,

of Charles

In the Vita

who was

Nuova Dante

not yet ten years old,

words: 'She appeared before me dressed in a


most noble colour, a humble and honest dark red,
dressed and adorned in such a fashion as was befitting
in these

her very
simple:

young

Toys of that time were very


on the cradles, wooden horses'

age.'

little bells

heads on sticks and dolls


plaster

made of pottery, paper

or

of paris were popular with children.

The seventeenth century was in a very real sense


Age of Enlightenment, which

the beginning of the

reached

its

culmination in the eighteenth century.

saw the beginning of the

critical spirit

and the

rise

It

of

inductive philosophies. Galileo proclaimed that the


earth

went round the

sun,

the circulation of the blood.

Detail. Van Dyck. Sabauda


Montmort Children'. Detail.
Philippe de Champaigne. Beaux Arts Museum, Rheims. Right:
'Boy in White'. Detail. Van Dyck. Durazzo Gallery, Genoa

Left (above): 'Children

wear embroidery.

girls to

and Harvey discovered

There were advances

in

I'.

Gallery, Turin. Left (below): 'The

'Prince Frederick of Urbino'. F. Barocci. Palatine Gallery, Florence

every science, and towards the end of the century

diminution of

religious fanaticism. Politically

culturally this period

was dominated by France, and

by the prestige of Louis XIV.


Spain, which had reached the apex of its power
the

last

and

century, began to decline.

hope of establishing

all

rival

powers.

An

famous words,
in

Between 1660 and

new Holy Roman Empire.

XIV was able to defy


monarch who uttered the

In these circumstances Louis

absolute

Vetat, e'est moi,

he bent to

aristocracy, church, parliament

his will the

and middle

classes.

triumph of the rule by Divine Right, he did not

1680 European history revolved around France and

recognise any limit to his power, but used

Louis XIV. Catholic Europe, shaken by the Thirty


Years War, weakened by the decadence of Spain
and the new Turkish assaults on Austria, abandoned

his

country even greater, not only

also in the fields

Under

of art and

it

to

make

politically,

but

intellect.

the Roi Soleil France reached the height of

'Nurse and Child'. Detail. Frans Hals. KaiserRight: 'The Montmort


Berlin.
friedrich Museum,
Children'. Detail. Philippe de Champaigne. Beaux Arts

her prestige and intellectual and cultural brilliance.

organised there splendid

festivities

Museum, Rheims

Louise La Valliere, his

mistress

Left:

He

built Versailles, the

doned

for

insolent

Madame

woman. At

declaimed

his verses,

triumph of baroque

first

in

taste,

and

honour o{

whom

he aban-

dc Montespan, a beautiful and

Bcnserade

Versailles the poet

Molierc produced

'Children of Charles

his

['.

comedies,

Detail.

Van

Dyck. Sabauda Callery, Turin

R ft

,QV\^ D O NAX QVE ,16

'klLSk^Jr*. o**s.

V*C

[69

musical gathering at the Court of Louis XIV. Engraving

170

jr

IX

171

Louvre

Portrait of Charles Crequi. Daniel Dumonstier.

The Consul. Another engraving from


Almanack. Circa 1670.
the

Baroque period. The

who

ladies

the Strasbourg

Bertarelli Collection,

attire

of the gentlemen and

was

lived in this celebrated palace

triumph of the

made

by

tall

naked shoulders

beautiful

and brocades,

silks

rising

from

their

foam of lace,

their hair styled in the latest fashion, their

carried

lace,

their scarlet heels, gallantly attended

dressed richly in

ladies

Cour-

creativity of French classicism.

with curled wigs, dressed in ribbons and

tiers

jvsT

Milan

long train

by a little black boy. The whole world looked

towards France, envied her triumphs and sought to


imitate them.

L^^?

But the greatness of France had been

built at the price

of immense

The advance of

sacrifices

by the people.

rationalism was speeded

by the

philosophic writings of Descartes, and the same

m'k
Kf^-

can be detected in the plays of Corneille; in the

spirit
1

comedies of Moliere with

his

sharp powers of ob-

servation; in Racine, and even in La Fontaine


his Fables invested

feelings.

In

Br sij/r

<%M

Pfiiil WSsis.

human

who in

thoughts and

This tendency towards rationalism emerged

^jSl

W-3&.

animals with

in literature

not only in France but in England

also.

England

Anonymous. Engraving. Circa 1690

Portrait of Newton.

In the reign

of Elizabeth, England attained

degree

often taking part in

of prestige which she had never enjoyed before. The

his operas.

defeat of the Spanish

them himself, and Lulli produced


The whole Court, five thousand people,

the flower of French aristocracy, lived at the Palace;

power.

thousand more people, in the service of the king,

genius,

five

were housed
fetes

and

in adjoining buildings.

festivals

The

fairy-like

of Versailles constantly celebrated

The

architectural style of Versailles, given

impulse by Michelangelo
lines

1-2

its first

in Italy, replaced the

pure

of the Renaissance with the rounded forms of

literature

Armada
she

in

land arose
his

1588 revealed her

produced her supreme

William Shakespeare, and

Bacon. From

made

the glory of the king.

In

in science, Francis

the struggle of the Civil

Cromwell who, although

War

in

Eng-

hated, certainly

country respected abroad. The seventeenth

century saw the foundation of her empire overseas,

and

the

power.

emergence of England

as

European

Portrait of the

Marquis of Drcvet. Hyacinthe Rigaud. Versailles

Museum

tury,

Italy

first

In Italy, at that

was

carried

on by

Tommaso

identified nature with

Campanella,

thought

who

itself.

time almost entirely under Spanish

domination, the seventeenth century was even more


the age of reason and criticism, the only field
Italian

where

genius was free. Marcello Malpighi was the

founder of microscopic anatomy; Francesco Redi

Women

and Manners

found

their place in the

world of philo-

of spontaneous genera-

sophical speculation, and translated into charitable

and the impulse which had started with the

works the urge to tree themselves from the spiritual


slavery which many felt oppressed them. In a small

did original
tion;

work

Women

in the field

philosopher Giordano Bruno in the sixteenth cen-

173

Six fashion plates

by Bonnart showing the trend towards simpler

dress

with

more flowing

line

Dombes, on the initiative of the man


who later became St Vincent de Paul, the 'Daughters
of Charity' were born. They were pious women,

mission in the country, in the towns and on the

who

'Daughters of Charity'. Ladies of the highest nobility

village called

'as

under the guidance of Louise de Marillac had

their

convent the homes of the

holy and

The

strict

modesty',

'ladies in grey',

dresses

of

this

sick', as their 'veil

as 'cloister,

obedience'.

so called because they

colour,

worked

wore

at their charitable

battlefields helping the sick.

devoted themselves to helping the


Dieu and the Hopital de

historique

la

sick in the Hotel-

Charite (the latter

the protection of Maria de' Medici,

Those

the sick as

gave away

who lacked

ladies

was under

Queen of France)

and the beggars and the poor people


la pitie.

Another engraving from Le Costume

example of the

Aristocratic ladies too followed the

in the

Maison de

the courage to nurse

Maria Gonzaga Princess of Mantua

money

to charity.

did,

Thus Marguerite de

Rouille founded, under the patronage of the Cardinal

de

Rochefoucauld, the Hospital for Incurables in

la

Paris,

an establishment which

made

bution to the support of the chronic

more

Less pious and


sisters

a great contrisick.

intellectually inclined, the

and the niece of the abbess of Port Royal des

Champs, Mere Angelique Arnauld, dedicated


lives to the
a

study of theology. Juana Ines de

young Mexican

girl

who

had learnt

the age of three, and to write verses


ten,

and

who

had been

la

how to

their

Cruz,

read at

when not

called 'the tenth

yet

muse' by her

contemporaries, chose to hide her intellectual ability


in a

convent. Gilberte and Jacqueline Pascal,

of Blaise Pascal, mathematician,

sisters

physicist, philoso-

pher and one of the greatest French writers, were no

famous brother, even if they are


who had studied philosophy and history, after bringing up her five children,
withdrew from the world and took refuge in Jansenism, the religious movement which opposed the
74

less

gifted than their

not

as

well

known.

Gilberte,

A shop

in Paris. J. Berain.

1678

moral decadence of the times. Jacqueline, a poetess


age of eight, a playwright at eleven, took a
degree at the age of twenty-five, but ended by

at the

following the example of her

sister.

was one of the most


of her time. She was surrounded by

In Italy, Cristina Paleotti


brilliant

women

and writers and founded the Arcadia,

famous

literary society.

When she went to France she was much concerned


with the rules of Court etiquette. She made the following notes in her diary: 'Cap not to be worn when
visiting

somebody important;

when

duchess

pre-

High Constable Lorenzo

sented at Court has the right to kiss the Queen's dress

who

(the husband of Maria Mancini,


had been tenderly loved by Louis XIV, but had

her

life

hem than other ladies; gloves


must be taken off when offering something to the
King or Queen; pavement men should walk in
such a way that women are not splashed by water

passionate admirers: the

Onofrio Colonna

sacrificed

to

political

Count

necessity);

Antonio Trotti; the Count of Pignoranda; the


Marchese Guido Pepoli and the Marchese Filippo

higher up from the

from the

Barbazza. She received the Cross of the Order of the

worn

Empress. She took pleasure in writing poetry,

is

also Faustina Maratti

Zoppi, another

Yet another remarkable

as

did

intellectual.

woman in the seventeenth

century was Christine of Sweden. She was highly


cultured

she

Fathers

of the Church,

had read Plato, Tacitus and the early


and the philosophy of

Descartes, and had gathered in her palace in Stock-

holm

street or the gutters;

in the presence

sitting in their

down

at the

of important people unless one

coach; princes have the right to

hold the

Communion,

nobility; silence

is

little

tray while the

to take precedence of

there

King
all

compulsory when gambling

the royal apartments, even if the

Though

sit

royal table at banquets, to offer the king

their napkin, to

taking

masks must not be

was

King

is

is

the
in

absent.'

this interest in etiquette, society

the greatest intellects of her time. Daughter of

lacked refinement. At table guests amused themselves

the great Gustavus Adolphus, she succeeded to the

by throwing bread or fruit at each other cleanliness


was ignored and the early morning ablutions consisted of wiping one's face with a handkerchief; the
needs of nature were often satisfied in public; cleaning the teeth was done by sucking aromatic lozenges
(Louis XIV was always sucking aniseed lozenges to
'freshen his breath') perfumes were used to neutra-

throne

when very young,

but

at the

age of twenty-

eight she abdicated in favour of her cousin Carl

Gustav, because she did not wish to marry and

would

no heirs. Dissatisfied with the Prowhich she had been brought up, she

therefore produce
testantism in

became

Catholic convert in the royal chapel in

Innsbruck. Subsequently she went to live in

where she
tional

176

life.

led a splendid if

Rome

somewhat unconven-

She surrounded herself with philosophers

lise

bad smells but never water. Reason, the ruling

force in every other field, had not yet expressed


itself in

the matter of hygiene.

'The

Visit'. Detail.

tion,

Milan

Pictro Longhi.

Aldo Crespi Collec-

The
Eighteenth Century

-4

.*

'

The beginning of
rupted by the

was

the eighteenth century

dis-

War of the Spanish Succession, by wars

and by the decadence of the reign of

in Poland,

Louis XIV, the absolute

monarch who,

after

having

brought France to the height of her power, was

monarchy

itself.

had already begun,

ment by law
the

undermining the

of
At the time of Louis XIII the Fronde

responsible also for

for the

institution

movement to substitute governmonarchy.

A second conspiracy,

Fronde of the Princes, had been formed, but

it

Enlightenment',

cultural

movement of German

which spread through the whole of Europe.


While the Renaissance had freed the European spirit
from submission to church authority in the sphere
of politics, economics, science and art, the Enlightenment tried to banish medieval obscurantism and live
by the light of reason. Christianity and the Papacy
were favourite targets. One of the most important
supporters of the Enlightenment was Voltaire, the

origin,

brilliant writer

who

led the battle, with his historical

came to nothing in 1653, crushed by Mazarin.


During the War of the Austrian Succession, Prussia had managed to seize Silesia and, fully aware of her
own power, was aiming at supremacy over Vienna.

essays

Maria Theresa of Hapsburg, Empress of Austria


and Queen of Hungary, by means of an alliance with

other ideas.

of

Russia and the Bourbons, struggled to defend her

of Prussia and of Catherine of Russia, he was also one

She

possessions.

also

succeeded in extending her

power through the marriages of her children, among


them Marie Antoinette, who became Queen of
France. Frederick the Great, however, helped both

by good fortune and his own strategic skill, managed


to enlarge his state, which he strengthened by means
of important reforms and raised to the status of a
great European power.
In this century Russia,

the Great,

now assumed

importance in European
rich

Jesuits, Voltaire

was encouraged

against traditional beliefs.

Educated by the

by

his father to

his

follow a career

He was

as a

lawyer, but he had

twice thrown into prison because

revolutionary theories.

friend of Frederick

of the founders of the great French Encyclopedic

aim the spread of education among


from the prejudices of
condemned on
was
officially
the times. Although it
the appearance of its first volume in 1751, between

which had

as its

the people, freeing the spirit

then and 1772 sixteen further volumes were published.

This was an imposing

summary of the know-

politics.

took the place formerly occupied by Revelation.

Already

felt.

a role

of

first

made

England,

by the conquest of her American

started the

and lampoons,

satirical

ledge of the time, in which Experience and Reason

under the guidance of Peter

began to make her power

strong in the Baltic, she

tales

and tragedies,

territories,

conquest of India. She further extended

Masks were a fashion accessory often worn at carnivals


and balls. 'Woman with a Mask'. Felice Boscarati. Dino
Barozzi Collection, Venice

Canada from France, thus


becoming a world power. The United States of
America declared their independence in 1776, freeing themselves from the rule of George III, King of
her empire by taking

England.

Wars and

political struggles in the first half

of the

eighteenth century transformed Europe, establishing


a

new

order, and giving birth to

new

states

on the

other side of the ocean. But another transformation

was being prepared. As early as 1692, a society known


the Arcadia had started in Rome. Its aim was to

as

fight the

bombast and bad

return to a

life

taste

of spontaneity, finding inspiration in

the simplicity of the shepherds


to

have lived

in

of the century and

who were

supposed

Arcadia in the Golden Age.

Contemporary with

the Arcadia ideal

was

'the

The extravagance of eighteenth-century fashion is


epitomised in this portrait of Marie Antoinette, which

Left:

was painted shortly before the outbreak of the French


Revolution. Elisabeth Vigee-Lebrun. Versailles

Museum

Men wore wigs and long jackets with embroidered cuffs. 'Louis
XIV receiving Frederick Augustus of Saxony'. Louis Silvestre. Versailles Museum
Following pages:

XIV. Rigaud.

Portrait of Louis

New

Versailles

Museum

XIV,

dress

became

simpler,

of the excessive ornamentation

ridding

itself

instead

of adding elegance to the body, merely

weighed
painter

it

that,

down. Fashion was influenced by

known

Antoine Watteau, well

the

because of

the wall-tapestries he had designed for Versailles.

Women's
of an

from a combination
influence derived from the theatrical

dress

Italian

developed

also

tradition and the French influence.


sisted

was

of a bodice which came to

stiffened

The

dress con-

point in front, and

by whalebones, with 'Watteau'

pleats

which came down from the shoulders. Sleeves had


vertical pleats, and were often short, with a ruffle that
came to the wrists. The skirt was deeply pleated from
the waist, and gave an impression of great fullness.

From

the back of the neck a

little

gathered cape was

attached at the shoulders, and reached to the ground.

Another innovation was the placing of


hoops under the
182

skirt to

XV.

L.

M. van Loo.

Versailles

Museum

was later replaced by the panier, which was high and


wide enough for the arms to rest on. The wide panier

Fashions

After the death of Louis

'Louis

make

it

metallic-

wider. This device

was, however, only used for formal dresses. For

worn in

the home, smaller and more practical


were preferred. At first a single framework
with three hoops, one above the other, sewn to the
dresses

paniers

by
hoop exactly the same size as the waist, the panier
later became a double structure, separated into two
material of the skirt, and held in place at the waist
a

convex shapes attached

to the belt. This fashion then

slowly disappeared, partly because the wide

uncomfortable

and

impractical

for

skirt

was

wearing

in

theatre boxes, coaches, or gondolas, but also because

of the

whim

of

an

actress

who

decided to appear on

the stage without the discomfort of the cage of

Women began to remove the whalebones


from their paniers, and use them for their corsets,
which became the next instrument of torture in the
paniers.

wheel of fashion.
Dressing from head to toe was a very long business.

Madame

de Stael

in

one of her plays has

marquise

cardboard painted black and white. The black

were joined by the


cape in

little

silk

(worn by women)
which fell from the head and

rochetto

or lace

swathed half the body under


Because the

bautta,

its

three-cornered hat.

which concealed

allowed one to talk confidentially,

XVT.

A.

of the time say,

morning,

'It is

we

with which
all

Versailles

F. Callet.

enough

Museum

choosing the
!

with

discussions

latest dress, in

And

performing our
tail

Every

are preoccupied each day.

those

tradesmen to choose our apparel


of fashions

The Gardens

to observe the details

then

What

and

care in

the effort to keep abreast

we have

toilette

artisans

with

all

the arduous task of


the attention to de-

needed for good grooming.'

was dictated not only by France


by Venice, where women covered their

In Italy fashion

but also

head with the zendado and

linzioletto.

consisted of a scarf, usually black,

head, reached

The former

which covered

the

down to the waist and was tied in front.

covering the arms.

The

linzioletto

was more often

worn; made of white cotton, and tied round the


waist like a skirt, open in front and thrown back over
the head,

it

covered the shoulders and arms.

the favourite head-covering

was the

embroidered shawl, or the pezzotto,


handkerchief, the ancestor of the

For men. Venice created the


initially

fancy-dress mask,

Genoa

In

inezzero.

a large

modern

an

white

foulard.

half the face,


lent itself to

it

all

of misuses (of which Casanova was the master)

sorts

'Louis

silk

and accompanying bautta (the half mask)

tabarro

however,

it

at Versailles.

Engraving. Eighteenth century

could only be

worn during

of the year, and to certain


sible to

wear

it

festivities:

from the

first

it

Sunday

few months

was permisin October

Lent, for the feast of the Ascension, or the

until

election of the

Doge

or his procurators.

After the high clogs

were abolished,

little

women
shoes

had been wearing

became

fashionable,

which were without heels, but had an upturned toe.


and a diamond or paste buckle. Paste was the invention

of a jeweller

who

had succeeded

in

preparing

particularly limpid and transparent glass,

used

the manufacture ot artificial

in

The

strass.

little

which he

diamonds or

Venetian shoes which made

it

so

much easier for ladies to walk were considered lw the


Doge Contanni 'too comfortable, unfortunately',
as they allowed high-born women, hidden by the
bautta. to

mingle with the crowd

Marco, and

to attend the

the Piazza San

gaming rooms without

being recognised.
In

France the King was the only

tabarro,

which was

wear

made o(

material or

to reveal his

man

allowed to

great cloak in brocade, lilted on one shoulder

costume: the

rich, puffed,

embroidered

[83

breeches, the silk stockings and the

men

modified their

dress,

little shoes. Other


which consisted of a gilet

The
made of damask,

or waistcoat and breeches.

waistcoat

rich garment,

satin

became a
or velvet, em-

broidered in petit-point with landscapes, flowers,


animals and symbolic patterns
a great

number of gold

could also be

silver

was adorned with


set, which

it

buttons, closely

or enamelled

only the

first

few

buttons were in fact used, so that the waistcoat stayed


partly open, reaching halfway

down the thigh,

about thirteen inches shorter than the coat;


lateral

was

pockets and long sleeves.

tied like a scarf

breeches were close

that
it

is

had

The collar of the shirt


lace. The

and embellished with

fitting,

and ended above the knee,

where white silk stockings were fastened with laces.


The coat was fitted closely to the body (the waist
was made slimmer by a corset), and widened on the
hips to the fullness of a half circle; it had a slit at the
back from the waist dow n, and was without a collar.
Trimmed with braid, it was always worn open.
A white tie hemmed with lace which was part of
r

'L'Enseigne

de

Gersaint'.

Dahlem Museum,
Srriocd Venetian brocade. Chigi Collection, Venice

184

Antoine Watteau.
had a great influ-

ence on fashion at the beginning of the eighteenth century,


and gave his name to the pleats on the backs of dresses

Mane Adelaide of Savoy, Duchess of Burgundy. Pierre


Gobert. Private collection

Detail.

Berlin. This painter

A long coat with

embroidered front
and large cuffs. 'Portrait of a
Gentleman'. Ghislandi. Brera
Museum, Milan

the shirt

was replaced by

a true tie, often

made

in

black silk. The long coat was lined with silk of the
same colour as the material of which the waistcoat
was made. The tails were flared and held stiff with

whalebones. The white waistcoat, embroidered with


multicoloured flowers, such

the

as

one Casanova

wore when visiting the Princesse d'Urfe, was


trimmed with a decorative silver braid, which
cleverly hid
In

all

the seams.

England came other changes

in masculine dress.

Lace and ribbons were abolished, and the lace

jabot

was replaced with a black silk tie, which in turn was


abandoned in favour of a white muslin scarf tied
round the neck. The sleeveless waistcoat of coloured
silk was shortened to waist length, where it ended in

two rounded

points.

The

coat

on the other hand

reached mid-calf length, and was called

a frac; its

were long and narrow, with the lace on the


shirt peeping out below a little velvet cuff. The velvet
sleeves

Coats were tight fitting above the waist, flaring


out over the hips. 'Family Concert'. Detail. Pietro
Longhi. Below: 'The Governess'. Detail. Chardin. 1739

Left:

Hair styles of the eighteenth century. Engraving. Circa 1740

was straight and doubled. The frac was generally


yellow in colour, but later was

collar

pale green or pale

made

In Italy the frac

also in black.

was

called a

Towards the end of the century, breeches


were held up by braces and became longer to

goldoniana.

cover

the

Though

extending

knee,

braces

over

were considered

the

stockings.

novelty in the

new to the
had been worn in
when men were

eighteenth century, they were not really


field

of masculine fashion, for they

Scandinavia

as early as

1500

B.C.,

Portrait of Vergniaud.

Durameau.

Museum,

Lambinet

Versailles

which covered
their shoulders, and ended in two points to which
leather straps were attached, straps which had the
same function as braces.

dressed in a seamless piece of material

There were
tious

many eccentrics who adopted ostentaOne courtier presented

and bizarre costumes.

himself to Marie Antoinette dressed in


scarlet cloth

trimmed

in blue,

pearl buttons; underneath


seen, in

it

long coat of

and with mother-of-

the satin waistcoat

pink and green stripes;

his trousers,

of a

was
soft

pale blue material, were very close fitting, fastened


by garters embroidered in white silk, as were the

buttonholes,

and reaching below the knee;

stockings were of

silk

and poppy-red, he had


dogskin gloves, and
with

a silk rosette.

with vertical
silver

his

stripes in blue

buckles on his shoes.

three-cornered hat embellished

The ensemble was completed by

an enormous muffin grey and black

fur,

trimmed

Long waistcoats were


worn under calf-length
coats.

'A

Gentleman'.

Drawing by Watteau
IS-

Below: 'Portrait of
Detail.

Ghislandi.

Museum, Milan.

Gentleman'.

Poldi

Pezzoli

Right: Detail of

the portrait. Before the Revolution

men's hats were bicorne or tricorne,


embellished with gold braid, lace or
cockades

**

my

i
middle with

in the

neck

wide

tie in

poppy-red bow;

a large

at his

white embroidered muslin; and

he sported an overcoat in lemon-yellow cloth with


green

stripes,

and spangled buttons. His wig was

very elaborate, with large curls symmetrically placed

one on top of the other


and saddle-shaped
shoe behind'.

The

of the neck, and

at the sides

in front,

and shaped

was

tied very

down

his back.

hair

fell

of the head, 'high


like a horse-

low on

the nape

pleats

remained fashionable on women's

dresses tor a long tune, especially at the back

trimmed with

lace

thus giving an appearance of greater fullness.

too were

'a la

Wattcau'. with great pleats and

women

preferred to wear the


was
often embroidered.
shawl which

Spanish

and edged with gold braid. The Three Mus-

a 'parfail

wore elaborate

the corset, and pulled

plumes. Soldiers preferred

felt

trimmed with gold braid or


Left: Illustration

from

hats with

little

brims.

rosettes.

A History of Fashion. M.

A. Racinet

Iloaks

hood.

trimmed

middle
of the neckline, which was wide and deep, was called

keteers

trimmed with white

mantilla, a silk

corset,

with lace and ribbons. The bow pinned

rosettes

hats

of the

where they started from the shoulders, widened


on the hips and came down to the hem of the dress,
dress,

Feminine dress always included the

Betore the French Revolution hats were almost


always three-cornered, often

Wattcau

contentement'

The

in the

overskift was attached to

up on each

side to increase the

volume

of the paniers. The underskirt, of a different


colour, was often embellished with ribbons, trills and

gathered

lace.

[89

When
with

jeers,

hooped

was born it was received


but soon triumphed everywhere. It was

the

skirt

introduced by the actresses of the Comedie Italienne,

which the Duke of Orleans had imported from


Italy. The skirt was supported by five round hoops
one over the other and joined together by stiff waxed
cloth. The hoops, first round in shape, later became
oval, but the skirt was always so huge that ladies were
obliged to turn sideways in order to go through
doors, and found it impossible to reach the hands of
the gallants who escorted them everywhere.

favourite material of working- class girls, the term was


later applied to

There was
tions.

Louis

working-class

girls

breaking

a certain

XV, on

of loose morals).

down of class distinc-

of the Dauphin and the Infanta of Spain, organ-

where he decided,

ised a great ball in Versailles,

perhaps to gain the sympathy and support of the

middle

classes, to invite

women, even

if they

to be in fancy-dress,

the

the most beautiful Parisian

and

King would appear

it

fir-trees

emerged

ball

was
that

titles.

as a fir-tree.

They surrounded

among

the

most popular,

When

conquer

given very curious names: the camelot, a

Chateauroux had

wool warp

cloth

the ferrandina or bombasine, a silk

and cotton mixture;


grisette, silk

silk

cartek, a lining

mixed with grey cotton

material; the

(as this

was the

his

heart,

as

his

the doors

men dressed as

crowd of Columbines,

who were

newcomers, and the

the

their best to recognise the

but lighter fabrics also became fashionable and were

with

to join the

Harlequins, Chinese and Turks

Brocades and velvets were

The

was soon rumoured

did not have

of the Royal apartment opened, seven

Materials

wedding

the occasion of the

dancing.
ladies did

King, perhaps hoping to

Madame de
The woman who

favourite

died recently.

succeeded in gaining the affections of Louis

Madame

d'Etoiles, nee Poisson, the

XV was

daughter of a

provincial weaver.

Gentlemen took great pains with their


appearance and employed servants to
help them dress. 'La Grande Toilette'.
Engraving. Moreau the Younger.
Bertarelli Collection,

Left:

dour".

'Portrait

Francois

Collection

Milan

of Madame PompaBoucher. Rothschild

of a Lady'. Detail. Bonito. National


Portrait of Mademoiselle
Lavergnc. Engraving. J. Daulle and Ravenet, after
Liotard. 1732. Left below: 'What does the abbe think of
it?' Nicolas Lavreince. Engraving. 1788
Left above: 'Portrait

(iallery,

Rome.

Left centre:

The Marquise

de

Pompadour

Blonde with blue eyes, Jeanne Antoinette Poisson


had a fresh and delicate face, with rather pale lips.
Intelligent

and

gifted,

cunning and fond of intrigue,

she soon learned to dominate the King, and she even

made

herself

acceptable

to

the

Queen,

Maria

Leczinska. She had been schooled for her role of court

favourite since her childhood, so

much

so that her

mother had always called her La Reinette. She had


enormous power over the King which enabled her to
meddle in State affairs: she obtained the nomination
of ambassadors, founded the manufacture of Sevres
Metal hoops were placed under the
wider. Engraving by Fragonard

full skirt

to

make

it

191

'Portrait

of

Lady'.

Verri.

Miniature.

Circa

1760.

Private collection, Milan


Right: 'The Hairdresser'. Detail. Pietro Longhi. Ca' Rez-

zonico, Venice
parfait contentement

Portrait of Maria Louisa of Parma. A. R.

Mengs. Circa

petits

porcelain (delicately coloured in blue, yellow and

and organised

gold),

theatrical performances.

was a friend of Voltaire and loved dancing, music

She
(she

played the clavichord extremely well), painting and


sculpture.
a

week,

She kept her beauty for

in order to

would apply an

long time; twice

keep her clear complexion, she

astringent lotion

made with

pomegranate and strawberry

cones,

roots,

cypress

walnut

leaves and alum, boiled in three litres of rain water,

and strained through


used a

nut

a linen cloth.

On

pomade made of beef marrow,

oil,

in a

double

her hair she

veal

Peruvian balsam and vanilla;

warmed up

boiler, filtered

all

fat,

hazel-

this

was

and scented

with rose or musk.


She was very elegant, and remained faithful to the
had a bodice cut with a down-

robe a lafrangaise; this

ward point

in front, a

or square (with

pleated

lace

here). In the

192

the sleeves,

which were

elbow, and adorned with

Madrid

1770. Prado,

trimmed

made out of the same ribbon

wide neckline

rounded

corners),

either

V-shaped

trimmed with

border artfully called tatez-y (touch

middle of the neckline there would be

frills

that

close fitting to the

of pleated lace called

bonhommes. The huge overskirt opened in front

in the

middle to reveal the

skirt beneath,

attached to the bodice and embellished by

which was
a

broidered border decorated with braids,


Jewel case belonging to

Madame Pompadour

deep emtrills

and

A
\

which often
ornamented the upper part of the skirt, were extremely rich and expensive, and often cost more than
the material and the making of the dress. Les robes a
la francaise were publicised in the Mercure Galant and

As well as dresses for formal occasions, negliges for


wear at home or on a journey became fashionable:

in the Galerie des Modes.

neglige in

The fashion a la polonaise, created at the time of the


war with Poland, had an overskirt with two cords

was often called Adrienne. Caraco, on the


other hand, was the name given to a different type of
neglige brought from Nantes by the Duke of
Anguillon, which had a double flounce falling down

flowers. These decorations, lesgarnements,

which allowed one


wearer wished, so
dress

to

as to

the skirt as high as the

lift

form deep

became fashionable:

folds.

the dress a

Then

new

la circassienne,

young
Circassian girl whom the French Ambassador in
Constantinople, Monsieur de Ferriol, had bought in
the slave market. The dress named after her had three
cords which lifted up the ankle-length overskirt; the

launched by Mademoiselle Aisse,

sleeves
wrist,

down

to the

and were longer than the sleeves of the

dress.

Elisabeth of Wiirttemberg. Lampi. Pitti Palace, Florence

i^^B
4

0Kr

HV^^v

^H

~JR

^dwm

Hm&flHHHHHlflHHHl

194

plete

the

HBIm^VJHJHBKU^

were

form a comdress. The actress Dancourt was


launch this fashion, when she wore a

skirt

all

in

one

piece, to

and practical

first

to

the play Adrienne; because of this the

neglige

the back of the skirt.

Then came

a beautiful

of the under-bodice reached

HE

bodice and

the fashion for the robe a I'anglaise, a

simpler garment than the a

of

la francaise.

a redingote similar to the

This consisted

masculine one,

a short

jacket with wide lapels at the collar and long sleeves.

There were no

paniers, but an underskirt

horsehair, and the cul de Paris, a

was placed on the buttocks and

little

of

stiff

cushion which

tied at the waist to

Some elaborate hair styles of the eighteenth century.


Engravings. Bertarelli Collection

Cyr, two hundred and


fc/pece de

Pouf

dm*. iJtle de t?<ju* fra/u

young ladies of noble


The boarding-school of St

fifty

birth but limited means.

csuvert

Cyr had been founded by Madame Brinon,

parent-

and

Louis

friend of

Madame

XIV. The young

taught science,

arts,

subjects so that they

nun

de Maintenon, mistress of
attending

ladies

it

were

music, dancing, and domestic

might become good housewives.

Their uniform was black, and on their heads they

wore

fontanges,

which were

headgear made of

starched and fluted linen, pleated like the pipes of an

organ. For manual

trimmed just

work they had

like the bodice,

little

black aprons,

with blue, red, yellow

or green ribbons, according to their rank.

Hair Styles
At the beginning of the eighteenth century hair

styles

became very simple again for a time: the hair was


purled up on top, and two curls fell back behind
the ears. Later Leonard, the fashionable hairdresser.

increase the

width behind. The dress consisted of

very close-fitting bodice, pulled in tight with whalebones, which was joined to a rich

skirt,

cut slightly

longer in the back than in front, to form a

At the neckline of the bodice was

trimmed with

lace,

like the

An Englishman named Hammond


the

make

tulle,

more expensive

which

to

lace. Little

little train.

linen scarf

masculine jabot.

became so excessive
every country there were laws passed
fashion for lace

chine to

some

The

that in almost
to limit

invented

its

use.

ma-

extent replaced

aprons

made of tulle

or silk often completed the dress.

These aprons were worn by the schoolgirls of St

La, Uyj/v/zt'i/je

195

introduced

was

more

far

now loaded

with

elaborate hair styles; the head

with

real or artificial hair,

bedecked

of veils, flowers, ribbons, plumes,

a battery

stif-

fened by pomades and then powdered. Hair styles

grew

to

be the most important feature of eighteenth-

century fashion.

They changed continuously, accord-

ing to the dictates of fashionable hairdressers. Every

name; when they had the added


complication of poufs they might be called a la belle
Poule; some hair styles had decorations as elaborate as
sailing ships placed on top of the edifice; even the
poufs had names which distinguished them. Every
occasion prompted Leonard to invent new hair styles,
like the one called 'Inoculation', when Lady Monthair style

had

agu, the wife of the English ambassador in Constantinople,

came back with

the

news

that in

Turkey and

other countries inoculation against smallpox was

widely

known and

There was

also a

practised.

'Mesmer' hair-do, inspired by the

founder of mesmerism, a

new cure for illness through

power of hypnotism. This Doctor Mesmer, of


German origin, claimed that through his power of

the

healing convulsions and migraine, rheumatic pains


'Portrait

of Marie Antoinette'. Janinet. 1777

and fever would disappear. The hair

him was very


figures of men
'La Petite

Toilette'.

Bertarelli Collection

Engraving. Moreau the Younger.

style inspired

by

high, strewn with magnets and little


and women, the patients he had cured,

and flowers.
Hair was always carefully powdered.

when they were at


made of lace and also very

hair style in place

wore
hats.

little

To keep the
home ladies

caps

large silk

When hair styles again became simpler,

the hair

was not powdered any longer and the emphasis


changed from

which were very varied

hair to hats,

indeed, and changed shape continuously. There were


close-fitting caps

were even some

and hats

as large as

sunshades there
;

'satirical' hats, like the

one made of

black veils and called the 'Discount Bank'; this hat

was commenting on the very poor state of the royal


finances, and on the banks which had stopped making
payments. During journeys, large velvet berets,
linen caps, handkerchiefs,
large

brim upturned

at

little

the side

Men were somewhat more


their hair styles.
curls

shawls or hats with a

were

They wore

little

black

of the same colour; or


'knotted', that

is,

silk

bag

neck; or with curls tied by

rest

tied

curls

of

of the hair

with

they wore

else

with three

women in

their hair in a halo

over half of the head, and the

gathered into a

fashionable.

modest than

ribbon

their hair

on the nape of the

ribbon; or they wore a

Right: Portrait of Maria Theresa of Savoy, wearing her


hair built

up on top and

Blarenberghe. Versailles

196

curls

Museum

behind the

ears.

Van

Pout Mai'tre en habit dunia<u\


av*>c

1 et ua

on Chapman a la Henri FV
i-onreau de chaire.

Venetian lady. Teodoro Viero. Print.

Bertarelli Collection

Collection

wig with

a tail

completely white, but

later

Wigs were

they were merely

dered, an operation so complicated that


several hours.
all

else

While men wore simple

they competed with

it

at first

pow-

could take

hair styles, in

women.

fashion plate. 1779- Bertarelli

or large wigs with cadencttes, hanging

locks tied and plaited with ribbon.

_,

Villeroi

le

Swedish lady. Teodoro Viero. 1783.

Bertarelli Collection

of the sentimental romanticisms ofeighteenth-century


society.

He was

the

first

admire the sentimental novels


appear, as classicism lost

Rousseau. Villeroi's

was a professional dandy. Though


proved himself a great Marechal, he was an innovator
in the world of fashion: it was he who invented most

could not be said that

France,

w hich
T

had begun

appeal and

its

place

its

to

was

usurped by the literature of sentiment, typified by

charmant, the favourite of the King, later Marechal de

he never

to offer a single rose to his

lady, to cry in public for love, to write love verses and

tastes

the Contrat Social appeared

seau,

was

its

changed, however,

on the

scene.

when

Although

it

author, Jean Jacques Rous-

particularly elegant, his preference for the

simplicity of nature had an influence

on

the disap-

pearance of over-tight corsets and the excessively


Fashion plate. 1781. Bertarelli Collection

ornate dresses of the time, decorated at neck and


wrists with

numerous

ruffles

of lace.

Marie Antoinette
The most

elegant lady in the eighteenth century was

Marie Antoinette. She had very

definite tastes in

fashion; she hated the corset, but liked

wearing 'con-

which were two half circles used to


widen the skirt, in a much more simple and practical
manner than the usual paniers or hoops. Her mother,
the Empress Maria Theresa did not object to the

siderations',

'considerations', but she forbade her daughter to

abandon the

corset lest she ruin her figure. This

Queen of France, with


in

blending the rococo

florid

style,

good

with

its

taste,

succeeded

curved

ornamentation, recognisable in dress

in furniture,

[98

innate

lines
as

and

well as

with the new trends introduced from

J
Feaiipe
Joli*Fw
JoLit*

*u

il<il>abille

iralftffl

po bonnet rood v?c un


l^livhii mi
mi* n,mi inot<f
"Vi*

l,

Venetian costume. Engraving. Tcodon


Viero. 1783. Bertarelli Collection

England.

The new way of dressing had

the romantic

grace of the English gardens, where imagination had


free play.

This

new freedom

the cold if elegant

new

gradually supplanted

the Petit Trianon, she

faithful, platonic

Hoops were now abandoned, and


soft pleats, held at the waist

The absurd

back.

The

done once

by nature,

that

curls falling

nature loved so well by Marie Antoinette; in her

model farm,

Viero. Bertarelli Collection

design.

symmetry of French

dresses appeared to be inspired

Genoese lady. 1783. Engraving. Teodoro

Fashion plate. 1779. Engraving.


Bertarelli Collection

would

receive her

lover Axel Fersen, dressed in light

muslin, with a big straw hat to protect her hair.

wide

back on the shoulders

The

grey.

in

curls

the

Younger.

Bertarelli Collection

Engraving. Moreau

that

were

quickly, however, because Marie Antoinette had

very beautiful blonde hair

Madame Du

not red,

(blonde,

as

Barry had obliquely hinted on many

XV

jealous of the radiant beauty, simplicity


a panier.

which were

favour of soft

fashion tor grey hair passed

occasions, tor the mistress of Louis

Lady-in-waiting wearing

fell in

belt tied at the

hair styles with poufs,

week, were abandoned

powdered

still

by

the skirts

was quite

and elegance

of the Dauphine).

handkerchief, knotted like a fichu, covered the

neckline, leaving the narrow, close-fitting sleeves


quite free.
pastel

Large Florentine straw

hats,

tied

with

coloured ribbons, were worn. Long blue redin-

gotes on white dresses were also very popular. In

order to balance the

cut de Paris, the little

saddle fixed

under the waist, the curve of the


breast was made more prominent by a special corset,

to the underskirt

which had

of triangular iron or wire, curved

a piece

and padded, which formed the pigeon's

breast'.

The

handkerchief crossed over the neckline, and was held

up

stiffly

pearance

so that

it

reached the chin, giving the ap-

ot false breasts.

Mademoiselle

Bertin

Minister of Fashion.
gendarme, she
natural

good

Marie Jeanne

who

came
taste,

won

was

Marie

The daughter

Antoinette's

oi a provincial

from Picardy. With her


her lively spirits and her skill.

to Paris

the esteem of the Princess of( )onti,

aided and protected her. In her shop

in the

Rue
[99

'Marie

Antoinette'.

Penn-Salbreux.

Detail.

Beaux

Arts

Museum, Rheims

Engraving.

1780.

Chodo-

wiecki. Bertarelli Collection

The panier was often elaborately


embroidered. Fashion plate 1 779

JsniB dins JaoriLndc jiaruri-.i'dod'ec-i


av?8u luiBoniKH or^ de j-lumcH. rtv
gjrirlan<ip drfu'iip d di- Inulrier.r*

',

200

Portrait of Marie Josephine


of Savoy. Jacques Gauthier
d'Agoty. Versailles Museum

The exaggerated panier became


cumbersome and impractical.
An elegant couple. Chodowiecki.

Engraving.

Bertarelli

Collection

Fashion plate. 1779. Bertarelli


Collection
'

'

Jk SSSb>~3

1S^

St
Jk

WmL m
:

Jr

mm
&" JLJ-jH

1
.

Fir

1*

^^^
,

bftwn

^*V

l<u '"V>|riaur.fiT c
[

'

unmnnrnnn de lornHmri Ouii.-o

i-hrtorati p In

201

keep the hair in place while at home women wore


huge bonnets or silk hats. Fresco. Gian Domenico Tiepolo.

To

'Le

Doux'.

Billet

New

Museum,

Detail.

Fragonard.

Metropolitan

York

Correr Museum, Venice

Honore, Mademoiselle Bertin slowly acquired the


best Parisian clientele, from Madame de Polignac to
Madame de Guiche, but Marie Antoinette was
St

had
'But

lasted such a short time, the artisan scolded her:

Madame, you must have walked

in them!')

woman, and she founded an association of tradesmen,

which were attached


to a little gold chain worn round the waist. The fans
were made of hand-painted parchment, of Alencon
or Aries lace, of precious feathers or of embroidered
silk. There were also little boxes and containers for

of which she became the self-elected chairman. Twice

beauty spots, cosmetics, scented lozenges, tobacco,

always her most faithful customer, and the fashionable

created

milliner

little

Mademoiselle Bertin was

week Mademoiselle went

advice, and she

masterpieces
also

to

an

able

Court

for

her.

business

to give her

was loyal to the Queen to the very end.

Other

accessories

perfumes. These boxes were shaped according to

in

which

scissors,

(ladies

The eighteenth century was


There were

accessories.

the century of elegant

little

umbrellas and sun-

shades of pink, yellow, or apple-green taffeta; or

they were natural coloured and

made of leather,

oiled

cloth or painted paper. At that time the fashionable

Dr Tronchin

advised long walks in the open

air to

fans

their function: little necessaires in

containing

Accessories

were

two perfume

to

keep

enamelled metal

bottles; sheaths

a little

watch key,

penknife, an ear-cleaner,

wore

their nails

and boxes

a pair
a

of tiny

nail-cleaner

very long and polished)

ivory plates on which to

pencil and

little

Amongst

the perfumes the

make

notes.

Cologne water of the


two brothers,
Italian by origin, had settled in Cologne where they
invented a new formula, which consisted of bergaFarina brothers

was

novelty. These

mot, flowers and the peel of oranges and lemons,

mixed with water and

complexion and good health. For


these walks special shoes were needed, stronger than

lavender, rosemary and neroli

the silk or velvet shoes of the time, so Iragile they did

The use of Cologne water spread all over the world,


not only as a perfume but also as a remedy against

encourage

not

last

a fresh

even

complained

202

few

to her

steps.

(When Madame Du Barry

shoemaker because her

little

shoes

alcohol in proportions which they kept a close secret.

headaches, vapours, indigestion.

few drops were

'Yen accepte Vheureux prisage'.

Morcau

the Younger. 1776

of Lady Haverfield'. Detail. Gainsborough.


Wallace Collection, London
'Portrait

Ahove and below left: Fashion plates showing skirt before


and after hoops were abandoned. Teodoro Vicro. 17X3.
Engraving. Bertarelli Collection

supposed to ensure the easy digestion of heavy food


like chocolate,

which

at that

much

tremely fashionable, so
ette, after

time had become exso that

the theatre or a ball, used to

des Lilas to sip a

Marie Antoin-

go

to the dairy

steaming cup of chocolate and cream.

Jewellery
Jewels

at that

time were wrought into

designs which

of

time

trinkets

period.

showed

little

off the jeweller's

widespread

frivolity

and

masterly

skill. In this

ostentation,

had more importance than in any other


The most popular technique was the sbalzo,

the art of engraving on the outside of raised metal

work. This offered great scope, and was very popuespecially with semi-precious stones in

lar,

bracelets and earrings, barrings

mainly because the very elaborate hair


to

hide the ears. Even

necklaces that formed

women. Diamonds,

so,

styles

tended

matching earrings and

parure

either

rings.

were not much worn.

were owned by

by themselves or

rich

set \\ lib

other precious stones, were highly valued. Bracelets

were
iiold

also

very fashionable, usually madeoi laminated

or silver ribbons

worked

a sbalzo,

and often

203

Portrait of

Maria Theresa of Savoy, Countess of Artois.

Jacques Gauthier d'Agoty. Versailles Museum. Right:


Detail. A silk purse. Far right: Detail. The skirt.

enriched with gems or diamonds.


bracelets

gold or

formed by four or

silver,

Women also wore


wide thin

five

plates

of

almost always rectangular or square in

shape and embellished with diamonds or other gems.

The

were joined to each other by small


Other bracelets were mounted around

thin plates

flexible hinges.

miniature painted on ivory and encircled by

coloured precious stones.

made of strands of

Necklaces were usually

of varying

sizes.

lady often wore a

little

ribbon round her neck from which hung

On

shaped pearl.
their

hair

velvet

drop-

formal occasions ladies adorned

with gold

hair slides

pearls,

pearls

diadems, strands of

filigree

and combs encrusted with dia-

monds, or covered with enamel or delicate miniaWatches were also worn by women; often
they were tiny, covered with diamonds, enamelled
and attached to a little filigree chain.
tures.

Men

also used jewels lavishly, particularly rings

with large precious stones

were

set in

gold. Fashionable too

signet rings of solid gold with the initials of the

on them. Noblemen displayed


heraldic symbols or emblems of knighthood, while
family engraved

men made a great display of their decoraThe gold or silver watch became an accessory

military
tions.

of great importance.

It

was usually kept

pocket of the waistcoat, attached to


chain. A- second watch, with

in the small

a small

gold

no functional purpose

and only an imitation, was kept

in the breeches

pocket, attached to a heavy precious chain to which


it

was secured. Other beautiful jewelled objects were

snuff boxes and the hilts of smallswords.

of walking

sticks

And men had


little

strap

The handles

and umbrellas were often of ivory.


of gold either on the

clasps or buckles

which fastened

below the

the breeches

knee or on their shoes.

Women's

shoes, often like slippers,

times without any heels, were

made

and some-

either

of

silk

They were almost always embroidered


gold and encrusted with gems leather shoes were

or velvet.
in

same way, with precious buckles and


gems. Shoes also were made with high heels and long
points, slightly turned up. Stockings were white,
knitted in a lace-pattern. Working-class women wore
adorned

slippers

rV

in the

of cloth or velvet.

Portrait of

Gallery,

Domenico

Milan.

embroidered

like

Right:

Anniballi. A. R.
Detail.

women's

Mengs. Brera

Men wore

dresses

waistcoats

Women
Not

all

of the Time

women

eighteenth-century

and interested only

in fashion

Gaetana Agnesi was

a child

she spoke perfect French

prodigy

at

were frivolous

and intrigue.
;

at the

In Italy

age of five

the age of nine she trans-

lated into Latin a discourse written in Italian

on the

question of whether the education of women should

The answer was


that women's intel-

include the study of the humanities.


in the affirmative, as

she asserted

lectual capacity

no way

is

in

inferior to that of

men.

205

workshop

Tailor's

Left:

in

Aries.

Raspail

The English

style

plate. Bertarelli

7W

C.L.

Styles in the United States were considerably simpler


than in Europe. 'Portrait of American Lady'. Anonymous.

Gunston

Hall, Virginia

of frac. Fashion

Collection

This statement was supported by the intellectual

achievement of Isabella Rosales degli Ordegni, who


over a century before had debated her theological
thesis

before the

Pope Paul

Holy College

presided over by

III.

woman of great intellectual ability was


Madame Dacier who had translated and illustrated
Another

the

poems of Homer. She knew seven languages

fluently,

could play the viola, sing charmingly, ride

horse and

manage

home

her

several books, including


stitutions for the use

one

capably. She wrote

entitled Analytical In-

of the Italian Youth,

which

she

dedicated to the Empress Maria Theresa. Because of

her contribution in

this

Bologna appointed her

book, the University of

lecturer in mathematics. In

her later years she dedicated herself wholly to religion

and the care of the

sick.

Rosalba Carriera, also from


painter.

she

Italy,

was

She came from a humble family and

made

designs for her

mother

who

great

as a child

in turn

made

them into lace. In those times a painted snuffbox was


more valuable than a gold one. and Carriera became
an expert miniaturist of snuff" boxes. She then began

'Mr and Mrs Andrews'. Detail. Gainsborough.


National Gallery, London
Right:

206

207

study the technique of

to

pastels,

and she learnt

English and French, music and singing. She

famous

in

Venice for her

live in Paris,

portraits,

and

where she enjoyed the

later

became
went to

friendship of

Watteau and Francois Rebel, the director of the


Opera. She became a well-known Parisian personality and her salon was filled with famous men.
Another great woman painter was Madame
Vigee-Lebrun,
portrait of

nancy.

woman who

French

Marie Antoinette during her

The Queen

sat for

painted
first

preg-

her portrait in a special

dress designed for the occasion, a comfortable, vol-

uminous robe. When this portrait was hung in the


Salon, it provoked such a scandal that the painter was
obliged to withdraw it and replace it with another
one portraying the Queen in formal attire, with a
pointed bodice and an ample, rich
a

skirt

covered with

mass of garnements.

Women

of

this

period were involved in science,

the arts, philosophy, theology and even in heresy.

Maria Francesca de Porto-Carrera de Montijo,

woman, appeared before the

highly educated Spanish


Inquisition and

was denounced because she was too

friendly with thejansenists.


the

The Princess of Lamballe,

most loyal friend of Marie Antoinette, and super-

intendent of the Royal Household, was elected Great


Mistress of the Scottish

After joining

this

Mother Lodge of Adoption.

Masonic Order, she

called herself

the 'Serene Sister of Lamballe', while the Duchess of

Chartres, also a Mason, chose the

During the ceremonies,


formal white

dress, a

name

Masonic

'Candour'.

Sister

wore

white leather apron and white

gloves; a blue cordon,

from which hung a blazing


from left to right.

heart, crossed the breast

Jewellery

which

belonged

to

Catherine

of Russia.

Necklace, and brooch and two earrings with topaz and


diamonds. Jewellery was often matched, especially earrings and necklaces, to

During the

last

form

years ot

a parure

Mane

Antoinette's reign,

became fashionable again. Chemises a la


reine and negliges were no longer made of silk but of
muslin or indienne, which was a fine cotton, in white
or in pastel colours. White was the rage, a forerunner
simplicity

in simple,

comfortable, inexpensive

continued to

wear embroidered waist-

of neoclassicism,
fabrics.

Men

coats in the English style offrac.

Left:

'Portrait of the Infanta

showing heavy bracelet and

208

Maria Ludovica'. Detail

rings.

A. R.

Mengs

^ss
Marie Antoinette's

In this

and necklace

tiara

century there were continuous changes

of architecture and

styles

furnishing.

After

in

the

Baroque period, which was characterised by elaborate scrolls, curves and carved ornaments,

came

during

1723,

was

when
called

fragile
in

the

Philip of Orleans

the

to the

was

'Queen Anne'
Bcrain,

715-

regent. This period


in

England.

and delicate than the Baroque,

work of Jean

term of

who

it is

More-

epitomised

rediscovered the

period was

and figures

When
style

XV

Louis

made

its

came

ishly

as

creatures.

Also

fashionable

decor-

to the throne, the

Rococo

The taste tor chinoiserie still


The Rococo was a profoundly original

decoration.

continued.

and voluptuous

style

which captivated Europe, with

forms and free-flowing

mythological

all in a

rocklike forms, scrolls and crimped shells used lav-

its

strange

of the Chinese.

appearance, combining in profusion

them with graceful arabesques and

decorations interspersed with monkeys, jesters or

furniture in black

in delicate pastel colours

ative design characteristic

grotesques of the Italian Renaissance and combined


fanciful linear

'Ghinoiserie:

and red lacquer and walls decorated with landscapes

period in French architectural style called Regency,

which roughly corresponded

this

subtle

play of curves,

swirling,

design. Mirrors contributed to give


to

asymmetrical

lines, especially in
a

furniture

new character

rooms, covering walls and ceilings and creating

209

series

of surfaces that seemed to melt into each other.

Madame

de

Pompadour had

beauty from every possible angle, in an attempt to be


fascinating every

There was

vals, parties, plays

tasio

moment

at this

time

of the day.

rococo

trifles,

abrupt end to

masks, carni-

by Goldoni and operas by Metas-

of fantasy

in

taste

pursued

ornaments, colours, fashions,

until the

French Revolution put an

it all.

Dress accessories included fans of hand-painted parchment or

A. R. Mengs. Prado, Madrid

210

Fashion,
to

a passion for

and Mozart. Eighteenth-century

rich riot

The French Revolution

mirrors to reflect her

which

in the reign

be more informal,

now

of Louis

XV

had

started

decreed that paniers,

silks

and brocades should be abolished altogether. Dresses

were

now made

cotton, called a
these

of muslin, with fichus of white

la

were crossed on the

brooch, or crossed

The long
lace,

citoyenne or a

at the

gloves of

silk

la

Charlotte Corday

breast and fastened with a

back and knotted

in front.

or very fine leather were

and gloves. 'Portrait of Maria Carolina of Naples'.

replaced by the

less

elegant half-gloves of cotton, net,

against

the fetters and chains

all

imposed by the
high

or lace.

tyranny of fashion:

little,

Both feminine and masculine fashions changed


but were given new names such as 'Constitution' or 'Camille'. New features were the tricoloured

powder, beauty spots and ribbons. These became the


symbols of the tyranny of the aristocracy, which had
at

motifs used to trim the indienne dresses, rosettes or

created that

fringes
blue.

on

The

and plumes on hats of red, white and

belts

neglige a

la

patriate for ladies consisted

of a

all

corsets, paniers, wigs,

costs to be destroyed.

would be

the

between the

distinctions

geois fashion, and for

influenced by English fashion.

Revolution, from Robespierre to Saint-Just, dressed

Marie Antoinette's

just as the elegant

The working

men of the

classes

Since the

uniform dress was


for

all,

classes: for

women

worn with a white dress and a


red collar striped in white. The Royalists, however,
dressed exclusively in black, as a sign of mourning
for the loss of their privileges. The great men of the
royal blue redingote

same

time of Colbert

heels,

drawing no

men

the bour-

extreme simplicity,
in

the

seventeenth

century, France had had unchallenged supremacy in

fan. Versailles

Museum

old regime had done.

and the

wore wide

tricoteuses

trousers or sansculottes, identical with sailors' trousers,

ankle length and with an extra panel buttoned on

made

the front, usually

material

in a red

and the carmagnole,

with two pockets and

wide
was completed by

This outfit

short woollen jacket

collar

with red

which had appeared

boots and
tions

return

few years before. The most


Jewel box.

Italian school.

Eighteenth century

male fashion of togas, but worn with

a
a

took up the Grecian style

of the period, David, attempted to

influential painter

introduce

lapels.

a red beret.

The Revolutionary ideology which urged


to Spartan simplicity again

at

and white striped

plumed toque on

had no

the head. These innova-

following, except with the pupils of

real

the School of Mars or, under the Directoire,

members of

from the

the Council of the Ancients and of the

whom the power of government


was invested after the Constitution of 179.S. The
costume for the French citizen devised by David was
not popular, and was worn only by those who took
Five Hundred, in

part in the public festivities he organised.


all

dress

ideal

At

was extremely simple, an expression

oi the

of equality wigs were abolished, and hair


;

became equally
and locks

time

this

styles

simple, with a parting in the middle

falling

over the

reflected the ideas

ears.

Once

again costume

of the age.

The Revolution had from

the start declared

The
\

parasol

ogue

came

in the Late

war

into

eight-

eenth century. Fashion


plate.
(

1780.

Bertarelli

lollection

2]

'Promenade a Trois' Detail. G. D. Tiepolo. Ca' Rezzonico,


.

Venice
the

world of fashion, just

century. In the

last

as Italy

had

in the sixteenth

decade of the eighteenth century

France, preoccupied with political problems,


field to

through
city

German

England. In 1791 a
Paris,

the

left

traveller, passing

noted that interest in fashion in

this

appeared to be dormant. The elegantes had be-

come

emigrants, followed abroad by their dress-

Even Mademoiselle Bertin had left the


first in Vienna and then in
London, where she found some of her former clients

makers.
capital,

and taken refuge

had become milliners, maids or darning women.


French
silks,

women

were obliged

to give

up wearing

brocades and velvets and to replace them with

printed

materials

which they named

'Equality',

Fashion plate. 1791

nit

'Liberty' or 'Republican'.

Even the names chosen

for

new-born babies expressed revolutionary ideas


names like Republique, Civilisation or Marat and,
with the help of the new calendar invented by Fabre
d'Eglantine, such names as Thermidor (this was the

name of Madame

Tallien's daughter) or Amaryllis.

Another sign of the change

in

customs were the

advertisements for marriage, appearing for the

time in

newspaper

called the Indicateur.

days and Fridays lonely

On

men or women could

first

Tues-

choose

companion from the list of candidates for matrimony. After choosing one of the loyal republicans
available it was enough to post an announcement ot
marriage in the town hall: the religious ceremony
a

'Madame d'Aumont'.

Detail. Elisabeth

Vigee-Lebrun.

Private collection, Pans

212

MM

->*

was abandoned, and the marriage was contracted


with a tew words pronounced by an official with a
tricoloured scarf across his chest;
thus

were

because
easily

two

individuals

united tor the better, but not for the worse.

law made

in

1792 allowed divorce to be

obtained on the grounds of incompatibility of

temperament or other slender grounds.


In the field of fashion there were other minor
revolutions. In Paris the

made

shops selling ready-

first

were opened. These shops were swiftly


Hamburg and in other parts of Europe.

dresses

imitated in

Fashion during

by trends

in

realised that she


a fashion

this

period was strongly influenced

England.

with

When

was expecting
a

mewing
This made

new

the Duchess o(
.in

heir, she

line, the 'false

York

launched

stomach', ob-

tained by

the cul de Paris

trout.

the waistline of the frock rise

from the back

to the

up

under the

The
all

'false

breasts,

The

line.

stomach' introduced into Paris was quickly

the rage, and

married

foreshadowing the Empire

was worn by young

women

waistcoat,

girls as well as

by

expecting babies.

which had gone out ot fashion, was


who wore one made

brought back by Robespierre,


of white material, with large

lapels

and buttons en-

graved with tiny guillotines. The guillotine was also

reproduced on the

lids ot

snuff boxes, often

with the lead taken off the roof of the


the Muscadins appeared

dandies

who

Bastille.

made
Then

on the scene, elegant young

rebelled against the simplicity ot dress

and lack of ostentation; they adopted the /;,;< with


the opening cut at an angle and buttoned in various
ways. Their breeches were usualK striped and their
boots had turned-down curls and were lined
ferent colours and trimmed on one side w

Following pages: 'Promenade

at the Palais

ith

Royal'. Philibert Louis

dif-

ribbons.

Debucourt

_____

and

a la Vestale

a la Diane.

Some women wore

this

provocative dress open on the right side up to the


waist so that their legs and tights could be seen. This

was completed by bracelets around


rings on the toes, sandals and buskins. The

alluring outfit

the ankles,

was replaced by

fichu

spencer,

collar

and

shawl, and

by the English

Hair was worn shorter


which gave the feminine

close-fitting sleeves.

and arranged
head

short waist-length jacket with a shawl

in little curls

vaguely masculine appearance. Hats also

underwent changes; shapes varied from turbans or


cylinders to bonnets with or without brims, but were
always heavily bedecked with ribbons and plumes.

The

Incroyables, the successors to the Muscadins,

excited ridicule with their exaggerated style of dress.

The

frac they

sleeves

wore was very

with no

and

cuffs

close fitting, with

very high waist. The

two huge lapels.


The breeches, indecently tight and knee-length, were

waistcoat, of a different colour, had

bottom with bright, coloured ribbons


were made in a striped material with the

fastened at the

usually they

stripes in contrasting colours

the neck these

men wore

from

the frac.

Round

an enormous necktie

wrapped around six times, which covered the chin


and formed a type of pedestal on which the head
rested. Gold earrings adorned the Incroyables' ears,
and very low shoes barely covered the heels and toes
of their

feet.

These eccentric fashions were only typical of

Drawing of an

elegant

man

with a cockade

in his hat

privileged

class,

who

could afford them. Ordinary

people could not hope to emulate these fashions. For


a

Their hats either had


shaped

like truncated cones,

sticks a

la

number of

tailors,

dressmakers,

or else were very low

This was the end of the epoch in which the death of a

Knobbly

jacobin replaced the slim ones

by elegant pre-revolutionary men, which in


turn had replaced the little sword. Monocles and
lorgnettes returned to the favour they had enjoyed
carried

at the

a large

embroiderers and lace makers were unemployed.

three-cornered hats with tricolour rosettes.

walking

few years

brims and were

stiff horizontal

Andre Scheling, caused a public


Previously in Lyons the manufacturers of

fashionable tailor,
sensation.

braids and materials had waited with baited breath


for Scheling's decisions.

The industry was brought to

a standstill until the tres habile, tres elegant, tres merveil-

Andre Scheling let his decisions be known.


As dressmakers and tailors closed their shops with

beginning of the century.

leux

the disappearance of their former rich clientele, even

Marat became perturbed, commenting about the

The Chemise

it might be
anywhere in Paris a working woman
capable of making a hat or a cobbler capable of
making a pair of shoes. This was why, just as

crisis in

At the time of the Directoire, French women abandoned the false exaggeration of their figures and
adopted

Roman

times,

shape of their bodies.


skirts,

by the garb of women in


which showed the natural
They gave up corsets and under-

a line inspired

Greek and

and dressed themselves

parent chemises.

Long

tunics

in light,

of

flowing trans-

linen,

of very light

fashion that within a few years

difficult to find

Richelieu had decided to encourage the art of lace-

making in France by prohibiting the import of lace


from abroad, so Napoleon Bonaparte, though busy
with

his

wars and

political

manoeuvres, decided to

cotton or muslin, were pulled in under the breast and

restore luxury and splendour to the

trimmed with Grecian

in Paris, in

216

designs; these

were

called

world of fashion

order to stimulate the economy.

OcToam

IM

Mil

OK THE I.OV

NEW OMNIBUS REGULATION.

cartoon from Punch

The
Nineteenth Century

[VAR]

'The Consecration of the Emperor


Napoleon and the Coronation of
the Empress Josephine". Detail.
f.-L. David. Louvre
I

The nineteenth

century, considered as an historical

town

dress,

if

shoulders.

bourgeoisie, clothes changed and


for

all classes

became more

of society, allowing for the inevitable

differences in material

the clothes of the rich

and workmanship between

and the poor.

To

express the

republican ideals which had originated in


times, fashion

imitating

all

Women
differently.

alike

became imbued with

classical

a passion for

things Greek.

replaced with flesh-coloured, knitted vests), skirts and


stockings and dressed in fewer and simpler garments

an extremely light and transparent chemise, which


later

lengthened into a train

Styles of dress

as

long

yards for a

showing the evolution of the crinoline

1810
220

as six

long

as

fourteen for a gala dress, as

wrote one fashion


'should not wear more than

'An elegant woman'

chronicle of the time

eight pounds of clothing, including jewels and shoes.'

Shoes were either


sandals.

flat

slippers or

shaped like

As protection against cold weather,

fashionable; this allowed

below

these tunics

most of the

were very

richly

second

became

classic

show. Apparently simple,

to

Roman

tunic of heavier material, usually in a colour,

tunic

welcomed the opportunity of dressing


They abolished corsets, shifts (which they

as

compensating for the nakedness of bosom and

epoch, really begins with the French Revolution.

With

the reorganisation of society and the rise of the

and

white

many of

embroidered and ex-

pensive; a dress of embroidered percale with a train


cost a small fortune. Lace

was greatly admired.

The arbiter of fashion during

the Directoire period

might

was Madame

Tallien,

Thermidor, the

first

nicknamed Notre Dame

woman

to

adopt the

in the nineteenth century

1830

de

reticule, a

handbag made of various materials including papier-

zenith of its power.

mache and painted

and, absorbed in conjugal

vase,

tin,

shaped

like

an urn or Etruscan

and coloured yellow, green or grey. Her most

successful outfit

was

lower edge of the

chemise

skirt to

which was open

show her

legs.

at the

She wore

Napoleon had reached his forties


life, was putting on weight.

Though he had more

serious problems, he

time to take an interest

in fashion,

not so

found

much

be-

cause he had any taste for frivolity, but because he

bracelets

wanted

toes, as

thereby, the economic prosperity of the nation, thus

on her ankles and rings on her sandal-shod


well as on her arms and fingers. On her head,

dressed in a Grecian hair style, she

of coloured

wore

head-dress

feathers.

Women
their hair,

were constantly changing the colour of


and when not wearing plumes dressed their

hair in silk turbans, lace bonnets, or tulle bonnets

oval brims,

trimmed with

these varieties

lace, ruches,

with

tied

under

the chin with a silk ribbon.


In the spring

of

8 10 the

French Empire was

1855

challenging England in

at the

this field.

of

fabrics and,

England had an ad-

end of the eighteenth

vantage

in the fact that, at the

century,

Watt and Arkwright had invented machines

for

the

manufacture of

textiles,

spinning and weaving were

still

while in France

done by hand.

Spurred on by Napoleon, machines similar to those

or flowers. All

of headgear were usually

to increase the production

in

England were

St

Quentin the production of

installed in

Sedan and Louviers.


linen and muslin

In

was

increased, and in Valenciennes the production

of

1874
22]

tulle, batiste

and

lace

covered her primacy

Emperor wrote

was

started.

in the field

Thus France

of

fabrics,

to General Caulaincourt,

created French industry', and claimed in his

re-

and the
'I

have

memoirs

written on St Helena that the ban on importing


English textiles was a coup

d'etat.

Only one item of

imported fashion enjoyed Napoleon's favour, the


shawls

woven from

He

Kashmir.

the fleece of the wild goats in

discovered these during his Egyptian

campaign, and immediately sent several in different


colours to Josephine,

who

found them very ugly and

expensive, but light and

warm. The

fashion for

shawls blazed up overnight, to cover bare shoulders,


to

make

dresses, to serve as

bed covers, and even

as

'Les Incroyables'

cushions for pet dogs. These shawls were eventually

manufactured

To

Charles Vernet. Cartoon. 1795

in France.

further his ambition to found a dynasty as well

as to

advance French industry, Napoleon imposed on

The

chemise dress

Collection

222

became fashionable during

the Napoleonic period. 'Point de Convention'. L. L. Boilly. Rothschild

his

court a

pomp

similar to that of the Roi Soleil.

He

ordered that ladies should not present themselves


the Tuileries wearing the

same

moned to Court a famous tailor,

dress twice.

at

He sum-

Leroy, and entrusted

him with the task of developing French fashion,


asking him to put the emphasis on brocades, velvets,
precious embroideries and lace. No detail was overlooked by him he even ordered that the fireplaces
in the Tuileries

should be bricked up, so that the

had to give up wearing flimsy materials.


Leroy guided the Emperor along the byways of

ladies

fashion, just as he
tionaries

had done before with the Revolu-

and before that with the

He was

aristocrats.

of humble origin (the son of an employee


Opera) and

in his early

youth became

at the

a hairdresser,

who was so fashionable that eventually he dressed


hair

the

of Marie Antoinette. At the very beginning of

the Revolution, loyal to his aristocratic connections,

he continued to dress in pink

and wear pointed shoes.

satin,

powder

Jean-Baptiste Isabey was the

Court painter and designed


clothes
for
the
Empress
Josephine. Portrait of Isabey
and his daughter.
Louvre

F.

Gerard.

first

life,

thinking he was about to be denounced

assured later

worthy of

by

their invitation to design a

the Republic.

costume

He had immediate

success

trimmed with a border on


which were embroidered the words 'Liberty,
Equality, Fraternity', while on the belt appeared the
words 'Liberty or Death'. Having succeeded in becoming the favourite tailor of Josephine, he also
with

a tricolour dress,

reached the position of secret adviser to Napoleon.


After months of patient study

he found inspiration

among

in the fashions

the archives,

of the

past.

An

man, but a misogynist, he was scornful


of the poor and a flatterer of men in power. In the
course of a few years, Leroy accumulated an immense
fortune and gave back to France its leadership in the
world of fashion. Under his reign, women wore
able business

crepe, cashmere, satin, taffeta and velvet

produced by

his hair

He was then invited to appear

before the Convention. Although at

for his

because of his Monarchist sentiments, he was re-

he feared

Cornelia Adrienne, Grafin Bose'. Detail.

National

German Museum, Nuremberg

J. F.

Tishbein.

Bonnets from Courier

des

Dames. 1809. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

the factories at Marseilles and Lyons.


raised to just

below the

bust,

The

waist

was

which was deeply

in shape.

sewn in

hem, which was often trimmed with frills


A genuine train was abolished, surviving
dresses worn at Court, where it was a separate
the

round or square and Vshaped at the back, was trimmed with lace. A very
short sleeve barely covered the shoulder or came

only in

down to

material

decollete;

the neckline,

the elbow, and

was shaped

fastened with a button or a

slit

either

with

a fold

fastened with three

buttons, in the English style. If the sleeve

was long

enough to cover part of the hand, it was called a la


Mamelouk; it was sometimes puffed up like a balloon
in the

upper

narrow and

part, then

The seam which joined


belt,

back, had

The

a slight

skirt,

em-

generally draped at the

became
ground and conical

hint of a train, but later

shorter, usually an inch

garment, very long, and

breasts

from

made

the dress, fastened to


in

heavy

always embroidered,

it

colour and

just

under the

satin or velvet, this train

like the train

was

of blue velvet

in silver worn by Marie Louise when


became Duchess of Parma.

embroidered
she

from

the

The Empire
The Empire
tion of

Style

style

was inaugurated with the corona-

Napoleon and Josephine

Notre-Dame

Six fashion plates. 1803 -1804. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

f->22)

224

in a different

the skirt to the very short

often fastened in the front with a

precious brooch.

and ribbons.

close fitting.

bodice was hidden with fringed braid or with an


broidered

To keep the skirt stiff a little padded roll was

in

1804.

The

in the Cathedral

dresses

of

of the Empress

An

Italian

advertisement for chocolate. Castello Sforzesco, Milan

225

were designed by Isabey, the Court painter, but


made by Leroy. Court dress, which became fashionable by Imperial command, consisted of trwo models.
One costume for informal occasions was in blue
satin,

with

on the

left

sleeves,

and

a velvet

worn with

turned to fashion in the shape of a long overcoat with

cloak embroidered in

back and fastened with ribbons under the chin; or

in silver

The

gold and silver and lined with ermine, fastened at the


waistline and

left

Antoinette's time re-

brocade

shoulder and the right hip.

costume for great occasions was


with short

The redingote of Marie

sleeves. Hats had new shapes;


wide or narrow brims turned up at the
sides, with trimmings of lace plumes or ribbons;
bonnets with the oval brim very high in front or
lowered to shade the face; pamelas worn very far

very small design of scattered flowers,

long sleeves and a velvet cloak lined with satin and


fastened

covered the hands, but two buttons were always


open.

a train.

For everyday wear

high collar and long

conical with

shaped

like turbans.

Over

fashion,

Leroy reigned supreme. His models,

over the tunic there was the spencer, of English origin,

published in the Journal des Modes, were seen

in black or green velvet, a garment already fashion-

Europe. The entire Imperial family were dressed by

able

by

the end of the eighteenth century,

with fringes or
embroidery.

'Portrait

fur,

with a high

Sleeves

collar,

hemmed

and heavy with

became longer,

until

they

- him,

and the most elegant

women

all

in the land

com-

peted to obtain his models.

However,

there

was one

woman who

stood aside

of the Empress Josephine'. Pierre Paul Prud'hon. Louvre

'Empress

Marie Louise'
Louvre

Detail. Lefevre.

Detail of the head

226

over

The jewels ofJosephine


from the general adulation: Madame Rccamier, the
beautiful enemy of Napoleon.
intelligent and
Madame Rccamier was elegant, cultured and refined.

4&#*-

She loved to surround herself with beautiful objects

which were the

talk

of all

Her bed of mahogby two bronze


canopy of bronze silk,

Paris.

any, inlaid with gold and supported

swans, had curtains and a

heavily fringed with gold and pearls.


table stood a

On

her night

golden lamp, and on the tables strewn

round the room there were other lamps which


fused the soft light of candles.

Madame Rccamier was


bathtub in

Portrait

women

Even the

dif-

bathroom of

elegantly designed, with the

niche entirely walled with mirrors and

of Madame Rccamier, one of the most elegant


of her time. J. -L. David. Louvre

22~

'Portrait of Pauline Borghese'. Detail.

Borghese Gallery,

hidden behind

The

Josephine and

still

weakness for sequins,

but the famous

tailor

transform her into the


she

upholstered in red morocco.

of Leroy were

Queen Hortense of Holland. The

her daughter,

hats,

a sofa

best clients

former had

Antonio Canova.

Rome

was always

was able

first

and

veils, frills

to guide her and

lady of the Empire, and

grateful to him, remaining his client

even when no longer Empress. In her retirement

Malmaison she was never

able to give

at

up her old

passion for dress, and continued spending with gay

extravagance and abandon.

Marie Louise, on the other hand, was never very


interested in fashion, even during the three years that

she lived in France.

Days,

when

she

fell

However, during the Hundred


in love with Count Neipperg,

she too turned to Leroy to acquire elegance, follow-

ing the example of her sisters-in-law and of the

step-daughters

of the

Stephanie. Caroline,

Leroy

for her gala

Emperor,

Queen of Naples,

and hunting

two

Hortense

dresses, her fans

even for her jars of pomade. Leroy in

fact

and

also used

and

procured

for his clients every accessory in their wardrobes,

from stockings to eau de Cologne. Nor was Leroy's


fame confined to France. His clients included the
famous singer Grassini, the Countess Toschini and
Maria Walewska, who was anxious to retain the

Caroline Bonaparte, wife of Joachim Murat, had


dresses designed and made by the famous Leroy

22<S

all

her

with, furs were the rage, together with cloaks and


hats inspired

by military uniforms. Shawls, no longer

as large as in Josephine's

stoles

and loose jackets

time, and triangular in shape,


all

tended to

look like bundles. The climax of

make women

this

period was

reached between 1804 and 18 17, but after the Congress

of Vienna

in 18 13 fashion

began to return again

Left: Italian fashion of 1822. Courier des Dames


Below left: 'Portrait of Josephine la Croix'. Detail of
drawing. J. D. Ingres. Bertarelli Collection, Milan
Below right: Fashion plate. Vernet. 18 14

affections

of the Emperor,

who was

then her lover.

When Napoleon fell, the great tailor yielded to the


of the new clients who were arriving in Paris.

flattery

The names of the victors joined the names of the defeated: the Duke of Berry, who ordered gloves, hats
and ribbons for

a secret mistress;

the Princess of

Metternich the Duchess of Wellington. Clients from


;

all

over Europe, Austrian and English, Polish and

Leroy

them all. To him the fall of


more important than a change in
hair fashion. The formidable fight between Napoleon
Italian

satisfied

an Empire was no

and Metternich meant simply

change of

client.

Marie Louise could not do without him, and he was


indispensable to the Duchess of Wellington as well as
to the Princess

of Metternich. So the frivolous wheel

of fashion was linked to the cycle of history in Leroy's


ledgers, as if the veils

of the Empire

style

had the

importance of a Napoleonic campaign.

With

the end of the Empire, fashion changed once

more, and the feminine body was again imprisoned


in a corset

and smothered with garments.

To

begin

Fashion plate from Le Bon Genre. Vernet. 18 10

230

-/.

Lady's

toilette.

Vernet. 1814. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

with narrow,

to a slim line,
skirts,

and

tall,

straight, ankle-length

cylindrical hats that elongated the

feminine figure.

and swelled up into strange shapes,


ing,

broadened by immense triangular

full,

The

return of the Royal family to Paris brought the

tirst

signs

the

first

of romanticism

Mary

in the

When

grew smaller and smaller, but skirts remained


body at this time acquired the

Then

which tended

to

became twice

as full

An American woman, Amelia Jenks Bloomer,


now an instrument

attempted to banish the corset, by

of torture. She

London,

in a

tried to introduce her

costume consisting of

fashion.

worn over baggy breeches, Turkish


Her victory was limited to seeing her Turk-

ish

breeches adopted

as

an integral part of European

costume
until the

end of the nineteenth century.

of, dresses

trimmings

oi the

'wolf's teeth'.

two or

hem

of the time entailed considerable

trimmings. There were no more raised

same material

Now

frills,

three horizontal

as the dress, called

gathered and flounced

rows

to give

of the skirts reaching to the floor,

Sleeves,

which up

to the

width

in

at the

were favoured.

time oi the Congress of

ienna had been narrow and long,

became

shorter

short skirt to be

and ribbons. Whatever the fabric they were


in the

reforms to

jacket and

for physical exercise

made
work

The

so that the female

they had been, and were embellished with pleats,

trills

tassels.

the waistline returned to nor-

mal, corsets also returned. Skirts


as

high collars and

laden with plumes and

Stuart belts appeared,

lower the waist.

collars.

shape of an hour-glass.

The Restoration

hats,

and

of mutton'. Shoulders became wider and droop-

waist

Henry IV

like 'hams'

'legs

In the nineteenth

century

but

this

was not

to be

many former styles were

echoed and reintroduced. Just as the Directoire


period saw a revival of Greek fashion, and the Empire
period reintroduced the spencer and redingote, so the

Second Empire revived the fashion

An

obscure

[ungarian doctor.

for the

hoop.

Ignatius Philip

women
those who

Semmclweiss, observed that

in

did not contract fever

helped them

if

childbirth

31

during labour

first

washed and

disinfected

their

hands. Three Americans, Wells, Jackson and Morton,

The Rise of the

Bourgeoisie

discovered that a few drops of chloroform or ether

After the Restoration, the bourgeoisie rose to

were enough to ease the pain of tooth extractions,


and thus invented anaesthesia. Their method was

positions of power.

later

used to ease labour pains, and

was the

first

a la Reine,

Queen

Victoria

to try this, initiating the trend for labour

Fashion, however, did not keep pace with the


scientific and practical discoveries of the industrial

revolution. Instead
stiffjackets a la

it

went

rather wild, with

wide

Malakqff, Polish style bootees, mittens

of open-work cotton, miniature umbrellas with long


handles and complicated mechanisms, posies of fresh
flowers

on the

worn on

the head, tucked in the belt or

To

books.

express their sense of self-importance they

embarked on

or painless childbirth.

sewn

new

They became financiers, industrialists, merchants and members of the Stock Exchange. They began to collect paintings and precious
a life

of conspicuous consumption, to

womenfolk who

the gratification of their

nostalgi-

cally imitated the past, particularly the fashion for

fancy-dress balls with historical themes. Architecture

and furniture

well as fashion were affected by

as

nostalgia for the past.

A new

was born,

sensibility

melancholy and languid. The romantic

ballets

of

Taglioni and Fanny Essler, the poems of de Musset

and the music of Chopin were the moving passions

dress.

of the day. Literature

fashion,

and fashion

gown was

began
in

to

show an

interest in

Balzac wrote

literature.

which fell
down in adorable pleats and betrayed the hand of
a fashionable tailor'. This tailor was called Victorine,
and was admired even by Stendhal for her skill.
'.

style of cloak inspired by Italian opera. Courier


Dames. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

her

adorned by three

frills,

des

The Crinoline
Fashion under Napoleon

Over long

petticoat covered

kept the

skirt

worn
the

by the

decreed the crinoline.

woman wore

crinoline.

special

and wide; over

skirt stiff

a flannel

under-

this

were

more percale underskirts, and finally


The middle-class woman contentedly

three

dress.

wore

III

lace pantaloons a

little silk

apron over her crinoline, and pro-

tected her hair style with a lace cap while attending


to her domestic chores or

When

she

went shopping

doing her embroidery.

she threw a mantilla over

her dress and hid her face under a bonnet.

Her even-

ing dress had a wide neckline, modestly veiled by the


ever-present shawl, or

multicoloured

by

stripes. In

the bayadere, a scarf with

summer

the dress

was often

made of organdie embroidered with sprigs of flowers.


Fashion, however, as

it

continued to evolve, gave

birth to the lionne style, designed for eccentric

nish

women, who were

man-

able to handle the pistol and

whip, to ride well, to speak the slang of the

turf, to

smoke and to drink alcohol. By day they would


wear an outfit influenced by English fashion, with
loops on their jackets, blouses with jabots and yellow
leather gloves. In the evening they would swathe
themselves in Eastern materials, usually with Turkish
sleeves,

with Grecian bonnets on

their hair falling in curls

George Sand,
232

who

their heads

and

on the nape of the neck.

dared to dress like

a lionne,

with

Romantic
'Portrait

fashions, with wide but modest necklines gave women a fragile look.
of Margherita Verdi'. Mussini. Museum of La Scala Opera House,
House. Milan

233

The Empress Marie

Louise, Napoleon's

widow. Minia-

ture. Private collection

her masculine garments and cigars, was nevertheless

an intelligent, active

At

woman.

the crinoline

first

was an underskirt starched


later this went through

and lined with horsehair, but


various changes.

Hoops of compressed

horsehair and

padded frames were added. Finally an ingenious man


replaced the horsehair padding with steel springs, an

invention that had such successthat in four weeks he

earned

women
skirts

huge fortune. The

steel

to reduce the incredible

hoops allowed

number of under-

they had formerly been obliged to wear, to do

away with

all

padding, and to

effect a considerable

were not very expensive. A


crinoline with twenty-four hoops cost only a few
shillings, but women who could afford it bought
saving, as his springs

the

Thompson

crinoline,

which weighed only

ounces, and was considerably

Then

ten

more comfortable.

Delirac invented a seemingly magic crinoline,

which could be expanded or contracted as desired.


Crinolines were the secret of elegance, and choosing the right one became a matter of great importance. One fashionable lady asked no less a man than
Bismarck himself to get her an oval crinoline from
Berlin, which would make it easier for her to go
through doors. Crinoline shapes were oval or round,
or

flat

in front

and extended

at the

back, or a crino-

line might have a cord to raise or lower the draping.


The craze for crinolines spread throughout the

world; they were worn in the

theatre, in the 'salons',

Men's dress coats were double-breasted and trousers were


long enough to cover the top of the shoe. Fashion plate.
1830

234

In

the

mid-nineteenth century

'Portrait

of

the

Archduchess

shoulders were accentuated by

Sophia'. Josef Kriehuber.

wide necklines.

Bertarelli Collection,

'Portrait

of

1836.

Milan

Portrait of Countess Emilia

Sommariva.
Boulanger

Detail.

C.

B.

Lady'. Berry.

Fashion plate. 1830. Bertarelli Collection,

Milan

235

The

h\

crinoline became very popular during the reign of Napoleon III. Twelve variations are shown above. Little tringed
shawls and trimmed bonnets were also fashionable at this time. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

236

and in the street. As its width steadily increased, bows,


puffs, fringes, frills and laces were added to it, until it

became

so exaggerated that

of all the

The

satirists

it

was

a target for the

of the age.

was the Empress, Eugenie de Montijo,

made

nobility and even middle-class

However, she never adopted bizarre or


was nicknamed Fall

of her love for ribbons,

frills

and lace. Only a few intimates knew of her goodness,


her interest in many charitable works, her piety (she
attended Mass regularly but was not a bigot), her
pain at the unfaithfulness of the Emperor, her remorse

Illustrations

from 'The Art of Knotting

seeming

frivolity

imitated her,
taste,

not only in her dress but also in her graceful gestures

and

attitudes.

Eugenie

Marie Antoinette,
with

whom

she

in turn

who was

felt a

was

a great

admirer of

her romantic ideal, and

great secret affinity.

The Empress loved variety in her life, and frequently made drastic changes in her apartments and
her wardrobe. She loved silk shoes, and never wore
the same pair twice, even though they lasted much

Tie in Sixteen Lessons'. Conte della Salda. Milan, 1827. Bertarelli Collection

T><?

Camucin

Sy

Jy-4-

fo//e(fo /a/to 9,

la/f.

( o//effi

Jfy.

^
-Fieya/iLra e&/jfa O-at/d&a

Fta Jf

}.

238

women

and she was admired by everyone for her good

<*?"*^

Collo (A

ele-

and sophistication. The

Spanish

black hair

at the

were hidden behind her

gance,

eccentric fashions, even if she


bala premiere' because

Mexican venture, and her sorrow

in

death of the Prince Imperial.

Empire

launched the fashion for blonde hair a

generation after Josephine had


fashionable.

their tragic

encouraged Maximilian and Charlotte

All these qualities

leader of fashion during the Second

woman who

wit

for having

Terry c

a;,
'!?

.9

Tenyo

Ruj

Fashion plate. 1845

longer than the light ones fashionable

in the

eigh-

teenth century, so fragile they could not withstand

even the shortest walk. As the Empress had tiny


all

feet,

her old shoes were sent to a school in which she

took an

interest, as a gift for little girls

their First

Communion.

Fashions for
Men's fashions

more

about to take

practical

Men

in the nineteenth

and

less fantastical

century were

much

than they had been.

Caricature of a dandy. 1838

Fiy

JZ

/;

-Di Catcia

/n

/i/t fh/fHortli&t

4/fa Cr.Jui?a

1U Era,/r

Di Baffo

/r /ant/c-ic

Co>tc/"yha

Va/'V'a

2S

fto

/Jt/u T"a/mri

Ala tana Tic a

76

A/fa Cv/i'f

Fu

A/i' /tn/tana

.\t <i'~titttr

1//a

Hussa

C ti.'ti

239

Fashion plate. 1840. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

Fashion plate. 1845. Gavarni. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

The only ornament was in the detail of the waistcoat,


which was made of velvet, satin or embroidered silk.

different.

shaped

like a stole,

This waistcoat was the basic item in the masculine

usually

worn buttoned

wardrobe, so

much

ordered thirty

The

collar

or

of the waistcoat was either


it

had large

and

lapels;

it

was

The coat reached


front. The frac was

to the top.

known

to have

mid-thigh and was open in

at a time, all exactly alike,

and de

double-breasted, closed at the collar and fastened in

so that Balzac

is

Musset had thirty-one made for him, each one

buttons
Furnishing fabric. Circa 1850

The redingote had one

front with a belt.


;

initially ankle-length,

to mid-thigh. Trousers

were

it

was

later

or

more

shortened

so long they covered

the heel of the shoe, and had a leather strap under the

them

foot to keep
front,

had

a black or

taut.

The white

pleated in

shirt,

high pointed collar and was

worn with

white cravat.

During the winter men wore a cloth overcoat


decorated with braid and a velvet collar, and sometimes lined with otter or beaver. Very fashionable

were

circular cloaks

capes,

which

later

with deep

became

collars

and

little

the uniform for postilions.

major development was the dramatic

cape,

which had

vertical

over-

slits

sleeveless

for the arms, a clouble,

pointed collar and double-breasted buttoning. This

came from

Italy,

and was inspired by the Carbonari.

Popular colours for men's clothes were dark green,


blue, black,
also

240

and purple, but brighter colours were

worn very

often.

Two

young men presenting jewellery

As time

to

young

ladies in

underwent

passed, men's coats

romantic

certain

changes: shawl lapels became smaller, rounded in


front,

and deepened

at

by

the back

small pocket high on the

extra fullness; a

was added

left side

to the

two side pockets. The overcoats changed too, becom-

setting. 1840. Bertarelli Collection,

the side.

down

The

silk

band which even nowadays runs

the side of trousers

monial dress

is

Milan

worn

for evening or cere-

simply part of the old tradition of

side-buttoning. Trousers underwent further changes


the underfoot strap disappeared, and they

were cut

ing as long as the coats, and cut straight in the front.

The

'raglan', a circular cloak,

by the

'plaid' in

was

later

one of the Scottish

supplanted

tartans,

and by

'Portrait of the
Versailles

Duchess of Orleans'. Detail.Winterhalter.

Museum

by the famous
Talma), which was semi-circular. There was

the 'talma' cloak (launched long before

actor

also the dust-coat

ing journeys.

had

of grey alpaca for protection dur-

The

hood purely

burnous, a full knee-length coat,


for decoration.

(A burnous worn

by women looked like a sleeveless shawl, ending in


two long tassels at the front, fastened with a couple of
loops and provided with a hood.)
Trousers,
the foot,

still

long and narrow with

were made

coat, either striped,

a strap

under

from the
During the

in a different material

checked or

plain.

Restoration the Monarchists, in order to demonstrate


their loyalty to the

length

silk

King, had always

worn knee-

breeches at Court, but by the middle of

the century the use of trousers

1850 they were buttoned

was

down

universal.

Around

the front rather than

241

Bonnets and hair

to the

modern

styles.

length.

Circa 1840. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

However,

creases in trousers

which could be knotted

in a

did not appear until the very end of the nineteenth

Paris an enterprising Italian

century, and permanent turn-ups until early in the

he taught the
for six hours

twentieth century.

Men's

mel was a leader in this field. He had three hairdressers,

a certain

all

two glove-makers, and bought

his clothes

only from

the most exclusive and expensive tailors: his coats


from one, his trousers from another, his waistcoats
from a third. According to the time of the day he
changed from a frockcoat to a spencer to a cuttailcoat.

the

more

He

asserted nevertheless that a person

elegant, the less he

problem which exercised


all their imitators was

and

In

school where

Each lesson

lasted

ridiculed

in

the satirical

prints

and

no notice, and con-

tinued their search for bizarre subtleties.

of Europe. Beau Brum-

away

ties.

journals of the time but they took

The Age of Dandies

is all

of knotting

and cost nine francs an hour. The dandies

were much

English fashions influenced

art

number of ways.

founded

is

noticeable.

these very elegant

how

One
men

to tie the neckcloth,

hair

was

Giacomo

his hair long,

at first

cut very short. In Palermo

Perollo,

who

was condemned

insisted

to have

it

on wearing
cut in pub-

and many different


were worn, from the shaven face of Napoleon to the 'imperial' of his nephew Napoleon III,
the rounded beard and whiskers of Cavour, the thick
but well-groomed beard of Verdi and the flowing

He, in the stocks. Styles varied,

fashions

beard of Tolstoy.

Masculine hats varied from the top

hat,

and

its

evening form, the collapsible gibus, to the 'wide-

Fashion plate. Circa 1840. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

'Madame

Moitessier'. Detail.

J.

D. Ingres. National Gallery, Washington

MH

'The Empress Eugenie and her Ladies-in-Waiting'.


Winterhalter. Musee de la Malmaison

English print. Circa 1840

244

245

French fashion

plates. Styles

of 1848, 1850 and i860. Courier

awake' and the bowler, with


vented by William

on the

its

rounded crown,

Coke of Norfolk and

instructions of Lock's, the

famous

St James's Street. Artists preferred a

Comic magazines made

was

in-

made

hatters

of

Dames. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

crown and large


was derived from the costume of the

hat of Calabria, with a high conical

brim;

this

brigands

who

infested the South.

romantic velvet

felt

hat with a very

new

fashion for the

toque, the Renaissance beret, or a


large brim. In Italy there

first

des

fun of the extreme examples of


1 8th September, 1858

the crinoline craze. Cartoon. Punch.

Hair Styles for

Women
styles

abandoned the fashion


at the

times had as

their hair

on the

back. For these styles hair-pins were

invented and were used to secure

wire.

for classical hair

and increased the volume of


and

sides

Women

many

as

plaits,

which some-

seven strands stiffened with

The accompanying

locks and tufts of hair

were

arranged on the top of the head, leaving the nape of


the

STUDY OF PERSPECTIVE-AFTER NATURE.

246

neck bare. Usually, however, the hair was

The name ofWorth became established as a leader of


fashion. The Empress Eugenic and the Empress Elizabeth
of Austria were among his clients. Drawing by Worth.
Private collection

gathered from the sides and drawn up into

topknot of
or

curls,

secured by

tortoise-shell,

high

combs of gold, enamel

and embellished with feathers,

flowers and ribbons.

By way of a
with

veils

home

hat

women wore

the toque, covered

feathers, or else a

they usually

their hair
pler,

and

wore

a lace

town

uncovered. Later hair

styles

with curls on the forehead and

middle.

Then even

came smooth and

At

became sim-

a parting in the

were abolished,

curls
flat,

turban.

cap rather than leave

styles

be-

with the bulk of the hair

Maximilian, Archduke of Austria and Charlotte of Belgium. Miniature

arranged in

or

plaits

between the

rolls

nape of the neck. For

many

and the

ears

years hair

was worn

puffed out at the sides and adorned with ribbons and

Sometimes it was gathered into

lace.

back of the neck, with

and

a little velvet

a great

a thin net

lock of hair in front,

worn around

ribbon was

on the

the neck.

A special type of hair-pin was used to hide the joining


of real hair from

With

the crinoline

it

Then

came into use.


was fashionable to wear a great

false.

chignon on which rested

hair-clips

tiny hat with a

flat

crown and narrow brim. Sailor hats also became


fashionable, made in oil cloth (the technique of waterproofing had recently been invented) with
at the

were

back

falling

down on

hats called capotes a

to the shoulders.

la cabriolet;

these

ribbon

There

had very

deep brims under which the face almost disappeared

and were worn

far

back on the nape of the neck, with

ww/w//rff
Yfrrtt ',!'

"m

''>j'//j//i/rfi/i

f/rtt/ifttr
1/iriMtn

</ '
<f

Oi //'..
fu/ata

the usual arrangements of feathers and flowers.

i
Madame
dressed as

de Castiglione, favourite of Napoleon


Queen of Hearts. Miniature.

SHnHBHHBMMMH
248

III.

'The Empress Eugenie'. Dubufe. Versailles

Museum

"Portrait

1 1

of Elizabeth of Austria'. Winterhaltcr. Miniature

'orth

The middle
dressmaker
couture.

ot the century

who was

He was

saw the

rise

of

great

to set the pattern for the haute

an Englishman, bora in Bourne

Lincolnshire, the son of a

woman

ot

modest

in

birth.

name was Charles Frederick Worth. He started


work at the age of thirteen as an apprentice to a
printer, but left to become an accounting clerk at
Lewis and Allenby, a London shop specialising in

His

'fashion novelties'. Fabrics

tracted

him

far

more than

and

lace,

figures,

however,

at-

and he decided Co

where he immediately
found work with Gagelin, the owner of one of the
most famous boutiques in the city. Before long he
leave

England for

Paris,

entered into partnership with his employer, and later


started in business

on

his

own

in the

Rue de

la

Paix.

Jewels of the Empress Eugenie

249

Fashion plate, i860. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

The next milestone


the

most

in his career

was

his

marriage to

successful vendeuse at Gagelin's. After this

he started to make dresses and hats for


fine political instinct,

campaign

he began

to acquire rich

his wife.

a carefully

With

planned

and prominent Parisians

for his clientele.

ternich,

Madame Worth to call on Princess Metwho was as thin as a rake but extremely

elegant,

and therefore nicknamed 'Madame Chiffon'.

He

sent

She was

highly cultured

woman, and very much

feared at Court, both because of her noble birth and

her disconcertingly outspoken manner. Worth's aim

was

to get the Princess as his first client.

Queen

Victoria as a

Sooner or

young

woman.Winterhalter. Miniature

later,

he was sure both her friends and enemies would

follow her example. Pauline de Metternich chose

two of the sketches shown to her by Madame Worth,


one for the evening and one for the afternoon, but

demanded a considerable discount on the price.


However, she promised that at the next ball at the
Tuileries she would wear a ball dress of tulle and silver
lame, adorned with red daisies, created for her by
Worth. Its success was immediate, and the Empress
Eugenie demanded to know the name of the magician who had conjured up such beauty. She sum-

she

The Duchess of York and

250

the

young Duke

inoned him to Court, forgetting her

own

makers, Palmyre and Vignon, and after

this

Worth's best
a

town

client.

For the Empress,

dress in grey taffeta,

velvet ribbons,

worn with

Worth

dress-

became
created

trimmed with black


blouse and jacket in a

in predicting

what would become

successful.

This

happened with the polonaise, a puffed tunic reminiscent of the paniers of the old regime. He also created

by Mallarmc, who
on the La Derniere Mode, writ-

the toumure, accurately described

was then

a journalist

nom

matching colour. This was the ancestor of the

ing under the

modern tailor-made suit, but it was too advanced for


the Empress. The Countess of Portales was the first
to appear in this type of outfit, which she wore at the
races, and only six months later did the Empress feel
safe enough to wear it herself.
In the Worth atelier new ideas followed each other
with amazing speed. When crinoline hoops became
oval, reaching knee-length so that attention was
drawn to the hips, Worth gathered the folds at the
back and lengthened them into a train. His talent lay

words: 'Without knowing

model

like this,

able to create a

de

plume of Miss Satin, with these


it

we

all

but only Monsieur


toilette as fragile as

long

gown with a silk repp

that

shimmering opal blue

hind silvery clouds.

The

that

Worth

has been

our dreams ...

of a translucent blue,

sometimes shows be-

front of the skirt

voile; the side panels are

tom with pompons

train

dreamed of

is

of pleated

trimmed from top

lined with pale yellow

to bot-

silk.

Over

pouf (a small saddle) trails an enveloping scarf of


periwinkle blue. The bodice is medieval in style, with

Elizabeth of Austria

slashed sleeves lined with pale yellow.

The

sleeves

are trimmed with more pompons. The richly pleated


fichu has the colours of spring.'

The

Bustle

The pouf or

consisted of a

starched

port

which shaped the bustle,


horsehair cushion or one or two

small saddle,

frills,

but later developed into an actual sup-

composed of

several

hoops

in the shape

horseshoe, held in place horizontally

by

of

laces or

bands. This was suspended like a cage between the


skirt

and the underskirt

the material of the dress

back. Over this cage


would be draped, with the

at the

231

same

fullness that

appeared in the drapery of curtains.

had an influence on furnishing


was in vogue, furniture makers
invented a decorative 'pouf a round or rectangular
stool on which women could sit down comfortably.
When the bustle went out of fashion, skirts became
so narrow that they hampered the movements of the
wearer, and women were obliged to walk in a series

Right 'Girl with a Veil'. Renoir. Jeu de Paumc, Paris

In fact fashion often

when

the crinoline

of little hops
skirts

were

as if

they were sparrows. These narrow

in turn supplanted

by the

crinolette, a sort

of miniature crinoline, which once again was supplanted by the bustle, although

now

it

was more

voluminous, with even more bows, ribbons and

Degas drawing showing


Harvard University

a bustle.

Fogg Art Museum,

drapery. This was the

womanhood,

for

new

last

expression of an idle

fashions that allowed

freedom

and were suitable for sports followed.

Women

recently learnt to ride the bicycle, to

swim and

now

had
to

there appeared the

first

breeches, puffed

and tight round the knees, the

first

peaked caps, the

fence;

first

sports shoes.

High

the province of actresses,

Rejane, and

women

Fashion plates from


1

in

II

was to become mainly


from Sarah Bernhardt to

fashion

high society.

Giornale delle Sigtwre

Italiane,

877-1 878. Bcrtarelli Collection, Milan

Men adopted the top hat and frock coat. Drawing. Detail.
R. Sernesi. Brera Gallery, Milan

232

/-

;v:

'V

l*tt

z*.

Jacques Doucet

the French actress Rejane. She co-operated with

him

models that she could wear on the


and often gave her own name to a line or a

in creating the

typically Gallic. At the beginning of the


mother had opened a boutique for handmade lace of great delicacy. Monsieur Doucet pere
had opened, also in the Rue de la Paix, a shop for
men's underwear, to which was attached a specialised laundry, which did very good business. At that
time, French and Italian dandies used to have their
shirts washed in England, where they had mastered
the art of washing and starching the elaborate pleats,

Doucet was

stage,

century, his

dress.

ruches

gone

and

lace

of men's

age.

The

clients

shirts,

of Doucet pere included Beau

Brummel and D'Orsay,


that bears his

of white

the costumes of a by-

the inventor of the jacket

name. Extremely elegant

spats

in his outfit

and matching waistcoat, with

his

beard carefully combed, Jacques Doucet adored froufrou, lace

and the eighteenth-century manner.

He
He

by Watteau and Chardin.


created by Worth, making it
more practical and suitable for the grand tours which
were becoming fashionable in that period. Doucet
was the first to treat fur as if it were a fabric, and from
collected paintings

perfected the

his atelier

tailleur

came

the

first

otter coats, designed in imita-

tion of the fur coats of Prussian officers.

Doucet's favourite client and also his friend was

la

There was

a coat in velvet

Rejane', just as there

and pleated

were 'Rejane

hats',

satin 'a

made by

Caroline Reboux, the milliner to Eugenie de


tijo.

For Eugenie this skilful milliner created

ful little hat

Mon-

a delight-

with the crown covered with pink and

white flowers. Caroline Reboux was the first person


in the history of fashion to think of adding a little veil
to the hat, swathing the feminine face in a mist.

Postiches

Napoleon

became fashionable again

III.

Women

and

curls falling

hair

was drawn

after the fall

arranged their hair in

of

plaits

on the shoulders, while the bulk of


of the head in heavy plaits

to the top

or cascades of curls, sometimes real and sometimes


false. It

was

also fashionable to plait fresh flowers in

the hair, in a colour

which matched

the dress.

few

years previously the ferronniere had been reintro-

duced;

this

was

ribbon round the forehead with

jewel attached to the ribbon. In


jewels
signs;

this

century the

women wore

were imitations of ancient dethe only true innovations were in the use of

coral

and cameos. Necklaces, brooches and long ear-

rings

were made

in

smooth or carved

senting flowers, animals, tiny

human

coral, repre-

figures

and

Fashion plate. 1840. Bertarelli Collection. Below: Fashion


accessories

Fashion plate. 1840. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

from the shop of Herbaut and Van Acker.

Paris. Bertarelli

Collection

'54

Cameos were used for brooches and


which were worn over long gloves, and for

arabesques.
bracelets,

Enamel was still very popular,


making of bracelets. Marie Louise,

rings and necklaces.


especially in the

ex-Empress of France and Duchess of Parma, had one


in

gold and blue enamel, in the centre of which there

was

miniature of her lover Neipperg.

delicate

'Sentimental' bracelets were fashionable such as the

made of very

one, also belonging to Marie Louise,


fine

blonde hair interwoven with gold threads. This

was made of the


later

hair of her son, the

Duke of Reichstadt. Also

chains,
crosses

with

medals,

trinkets,

little

King of Rome,
were gold

fashionable

medallions,

and charms hanging from them.

Men wore

jewels

made of gold

in their tie-pins,

diamond inset; or in their watch chains, with


trinkets worn prominently displayed across the
stomach; or large gold rings set with diamonds or
precious stones. White shirts with long sleeves and
starched cuffs were fashionable, which brought about
the vogue for cuff-links, usually simple little buttons
with

in gold, silver or ivory, or else gold set

with diamonds.

Children's wear continued to reflect the styles of


adults.
'Portrait

Although

their clothes

of Eleonora Duse'. Kaulbach. Private collection

they were

still

were

less

boys wore skirts up to the age of four or

'Woman
Art,

New

Fishing'.

Georges Seurat.

Museum

of Modern

York

complicated,

rather clumsy and unpractical. Little

The Marchioness Landolfo Carcano.

L.

five,

and then

G. Ricard. 1878.

Petit Palais, Paris

iH^

-<

/4i.

B**

hL

<**
-

p"*
w

\JF

<

graduated to long trousers and


long trousers and

little

little

bowler

hats, or

straw hats, after these were

introduced towards the end of the century. Even for


children

it

was

Paris that dictated the fashions,

still

though the influence

ot the

more comfortable Eng-

made themselves

could buy everything from stockings (manufactured


on the new circular machine) to shoes, hats and

One

dresses.

could also

fmd

toys, lace,

knick-knacks

and tableware. Merchandise was exhibited on

stalls

with the price clearly marked. Shoppers could thus

compare and even return purchases women


browse without buying anything, weigh

felt. Adult and


bought ready-made towards the end of the century in the large department
stores, which sprang up in even greater numbers than

choose,

the stores born in the years immediately after the

of beautiful and often

French Revolution.

At the beginning of the century clothes echoed


the past, as did the architecture and furniture of the
period. The 'Directoire' style, which developed
from the classical influence introduced in the reign of

lish

fashions also

children's clothes could be

The ready-made

dress originated in the nineteenth

century, after the invention of the sewing machine

by Barthelemy Thimonnier, an event which caused


much unrest in factories from workmen who rebelled

against

the

use

of the

'infernal

because ot the fear of unemployment.

machine'

An American,

Mr Singer, then perfected his famous sewing machine


it on the world with immediate success.
Wanamaker's was opened in Philadelphia, and in

and launched

could

themselves, or admire themselves in the mirrors. For


the

first

time, the poorer classes could enjoy the sight


useless objects.

Louis XVI, lasted only

a decade.

with furniture that reflected


Classical architectural styles

Houses were

filled

this 'Directoire' taste.

were repeated

in

many

Arc de Triomphe, which


arch, and in the church of La

buildings, especially in the

was

copy of a

Roman

Madeleine, built in Paris in imitation of

Greek

Bon Marche, La Samaritaine and

temple. Egyptian motifs were also used, for example

Printemps opened their doors. In these stores one

sphinxes and lions' paws in gilded metal on furniture

Paris the Louvre, Le

Left Birreria Cornelio. Detail.


:

Riccardo Nobili. Modern Art


Gallery, Florence

Portrait of
tano.

Bernardo Celen-

Domenico

National Gallery of
Art.

2*6

Rome

Morelli.

Modern

257

At the end of the nineteenth century women's clothes


showed little sign of emancipation. They still clung to the

Etudes su

-*?>Sjs>

tyranny of the artifices illustrated here.


Illustrations of La Vie Parisienne. 1 88 1 Bertarelli Collection, Milan
self-inflicted

mahogany, an exotic wood which had


become fashionable.

in

recently

After 1820 there was a reaction against the Empire


style

and the Graeco-Roman imitations. Furniture

was no longer designed on vertical lines, as during


the Empire, but was rounded, carved in dark
mahogany, hollowed, quilted, or covered with heavy
woollen materials in dark colours, sometimes em-

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Illustration

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p*r is. mate

Bertarelli

Collection, Milan

pf*(*r

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l.

lr.,-

b. qo-

broidered with large bunches of flowers. There was


a

profusion of fringes, bows,

tassels

and acorn-shaped

buttons. Interior decoration was characterised

by

Towards
:

the end of the century, a melange of styles

Renaissance for the

bedroom and dining

smoking room, neo-rococo


for the boudoir. Curtains and door curtains were
draped in deep folds, through which light and air
seldom penetrated; padding grew more and more
cumbersome and heavy; little baubles of silk or wool
room, Chinese

for the

for

bunches of

peacock

heavy ornamentation.
flourished

appeared everywhere, especially

launched by Makart,

glass

who

cloths usually

first

came down

table.

to the

Each room was

the full with mass-produced knick-

to

kinds.

During the
and the

in the atelier style

flowers, varnished reeds and


which were often kept under a

dome. Table

all

plain.

also created the fashion

ground, hiding the legs of the


knacks of

*,' * P;;''

w ax

feathers,

crammed

dvaleor

liicb'r

last

decade of the nineteenth century

decade of the twentieth,

born which had roots

in the

new

style

was

Pre-Raphaelite Brother-

258

-*,

TOILETTE.

hood, founded

VII- SER1E

in

Gabriel Rossetti.

848 in England by the poet Dante

The

Rossetti

movement sought

escape from the present, finding

pre-Renaissance
started the

To

Italy.

this

its

to

inspiration in

end William Morris

Morris Company, with the aim of re-

forming the decorative

LES POSTICHES

'.

not curbed by the ideas of William Morris; on the


contrary

it

was

Palace raised
Eiffel

Tower

its

accelerated. In

soared

who was

which he saw even

new impetus

steins

to

craftsmanship

founded professional
tions

of arts and

However,

art schools

in

and

England.
set

He

up exhibi-

crafts.

the influence of the machine-age

Belgian

and

modem
stil.

was

in

in the

style

lenry

influenced
in the

by

van de Wide,
a

water weeds on ponds, created

which

in

functionalism

curve of flowers on their

Germany was

At the Paris Exhibition

pleted

steel; in Paris the

metal scaffolding over the

International Exhibition.

which had been debased


by the invention of the machine. His theories gave a
arts

London, the Crystal

dome of glass and

called Jugend-

his sketches

and com-

works were christened 'Art Nonveau".

the

259

which, with

style

by

characterised

its

strong Japanese influence,

a long,

curved sensitive

is

line, as in

the curves of plants.

After the Battle of Waterloo there was peace in

Europe

lutions in

many

later all the

continental countries.

monarchs were restored

A year or two

to their thrones.

Second Republic was re-

In France the short-lived

placed by the Second Empire.

ment

saw revo-

for a generation, but the year 1848

The

nationalist

move-

succeeded in driving out the Austrians

in Italy

and the country was

united under the

at last

Savoy. Austria suffered from troubles

at

House of

home and

war of 1866 meant that the


leadership of the German states was henceforth
assured by Prussia. Russia, needing an outlet on the
Mediterranean and anxious to play a more dominant

abroad; her defeat

among

role

in the

the Slavic countries, tried to destroy the

Turkish Empire. In 1878 the Congress of Berlin re-

power in Europe. Serbia and


Rumania gained their independence; Bulgaria became a Princedom; Bessarabia was granted to Russtored the balance of

Bosnia and Hertzegovina to Austria. Three

sia;

by

in 1898. She was the first woman to obtain


Nobel prize, which was awarded to her twice.
She was a reformer in many fields, including sea
bathing. However, being modest and simple, she

radium
the

never adopted the extraordinary bathing costumes

which were

way down

movement

for political equality with

women changed radically,


and during the century many women distinguished
themselves. When the King of Rome was born, the
first woman aeronaut, Madame Blanchard, spread
men

the social status of

the fashion of the time, with shorts half

the leg,

trimmed with

ribbons and

frills,

and very low-necked blouses.

lace,

Another

woman endowed

with great character

and high moral principles was Florence Nightingale.


She was born in Florence of an aristocratic English
family, and she dedicated herself to the task of taking

wounded. Against

care of the sick and the

the wishes

of her family, she studied nursing and organised

and nursing

Lamp.'

the start of the

at the

One of the greatest women of the time was


Maria Sklodowska, the wife of Pierre Curie. In
collaboration with her husband she discovered

Austria and Italy the Triple Alliance.


the invention of the steam-engine and

degree in mathematics and taught

profession as she wished.

aid

Between

University of Stockholm. In Turin, Lidia Poet took


a degree in Law but was not allowed to practise her

were the leaders of Europe: England,


Russia and Germany. The balance of power was
maintained by a system of alliances, England, France
and Russia forming the Triple Entente and Germany,

great powers

woman, Madame Kovalewsky, who

a Russian

obtained

on the

services

battlefields

first

of the

Crimea. The lamp which Florence Nightingale carried

around the wards

in her hospital

on night duty caused her

On

when

to be called 'the

she

was

Lady of the

her return to England she renounced

marriage in order to devote herself to public service.

From

her fight against disease was born the Inter-

Red

national

Cross.

women

Progressive

at

this

time fought a hard

woman,

which was
But they did not
manage to banish such feminine artifices as make-up
and the many different kinds of adornments of this

helped the Carbonari, befriended Mazzini and Gari-

period: wigs to hide baldness; postiches to puff up

news from

the

Belgiojoso,

baldi,

a balloon.

beautiful

and travelled

continent of Africa.
the

first

far

The

and

Princess Cristina di
aristocratic

and wide, even across the

The Countess Clara Maffei was

woman in Italy to start a literary salon, which

was attended by Giuseppe Verdi, Alessandro Manzoni, Carlo Tenca and Ugo Foscolo. Less aggressive

more sensitive,
power to the support

than the Princess of Belgiojoso, but


she dedicated

all

her energy and

battle for feminine emancipation, a battle

to be

won in

the twentieth century.

hair; false hair attached to the hat to simulate

hair;

artificial

eyelashes

wrinkle bandages and


suggest

a larger

pills;

and padded brassieres to

bosom.

At the end of the nineteenth century women's


clothes showed little sign of emancipation. Waists
were still excessively tight, and skirts were long and

Woman' move-

of the patriots of her time.

hampering. Nevertheless the 'New

Mary Claire Dawes was the first Englishwoman


to become a Master of Arts, and collected many other

ment of

the

In the

890s the craze for bicycling opened

modern history, mathematics


economy. Her example was followed

vistas

and

been planted.

260

880s had not been without

its effect.

new

of freedom. The seeds of emancipation had

degrees in ancient and


political

long

and beauty spots; anti-

When women
clothes

began to take part in energetic sports their


less hampering. Bloomers were worn by
Gens Chics'. Gyp. 1895. Bertarelli Collection

became

cyclists. 'Les

The
Twentieth Century

262

The

First

From

between crowds of Berliners


street to admire her elegance.

Three Decades

871 to 1914 the world enjoyed a period of

peace between the Great Powers, during which


material wealth increased prodigiously. The twentieth century was born in the midst of flowers strewn

everywhere, on

on furnishings and in archiThe Liberty style was launched by Arthur

tecture.

whose

ally in

chinoiseries created a

and

flat,

new

fashion, especi-

with

fabrics,

The

fashionable tailor from 19 10 to 1914 was Paul

Poiret, an

extreme non-conformist. Jacques Doucet


at the beginning of his career as an

had employed him

stylised patterns.

beginning of the century changed

at the

Paul Poiret

in Oriental objets

and oriental-inspired

oriental

their light colours

Women

tiara

dresses,

Lasenby Liberty, an English dealer


d'art,

at the

with a sapphire

applause of the

apprentice in his firm. At the end of the

the style of their corsets. Instead of exerting pressure

Doucet paid Poiret

on the abdomen, the ones they wore were

youth immediately spent on

boned

in front, thus

bosom and of

straight-

enhancing the opulence of the

the hips.

swathed herself in

The woman of the period


boa and wore hats loaded

a feather

ing sequins and bead embroideries. Beads were the

guidance.

as

well as

adorned lamp-shades and

fringes

women's

screens,

clothes.

youth inaugurated

(a

dresses entirely

Rue Aubcr
his

in

influence.

longer had attacks of the vapours, brought on by the


difficulty

wore

which the

much less constricting under his


Women who were dressed by him no

of breathing

shoulder and narrow

Sergo, the Italian novelist,

in the

and soon began to exercise

d' Annunzio,

broidered with daisies

francs

splendid pair of cuff-

Corsets became

They learned to walk

Oscar Wilde. The duchesses described by Matilde

Maison

his

The early years of the twentieth century were very


much influenced by literary fashions set by Gabriele
Paul Bourget, Maurice Maeterlinck and

hundred

month

from Cartier's. Poiret's whole career was extravagant and sensational in this manner.
With 50,000 francs borrowed from his mother, the
Paris,

Bead

five

first

links

with ornaments, such as stuffed birds and false fruit.


Her boleros were trimmed with cascades of lace, muslin frills and ruches. Her bodice was strewn with shin-

rage.

the

ap-

Opera dressed in lilac-grey


on her blonde hair, the
audience was deafening.

peared in her box


silk,

who stopped in
When Alexandra

than

it

had been;

from shoulder

in their tight-laced dresses.

freely.

sleeves,

The waistline was higher

which had been wide

at the

now were

tight

at the wrist,

to wrist; the conical skirt lengthened

em-

flower brought into fashion

An

early sewing machine. Advertisement

by Marguerite, the Queen of Italy), topped by hats


trimmed with the same flowers, and in their gloved
hands clasped great bunches of

displayed painted
ina Alix,
the

Queen

lips

still

more

in public.

fashion decreed water-green,

tie.

Berlin, Czar-

In

official visit to

Austrian Court wearing a black outfit

man's

or

Victoria's granddaughter, shocked

Smart Set by appearing on an

like a

daisies.

women who smoked

Scandals were created by

with

suit,

a little

lilac

(at a

the

time when

or pastel blue) cut

white collar and

black

In the evening at the gala dinner she again ap-

peared in black, wearing a dress of crepe, with long


sleeves,

high up

at

the neck, with only

one Russian

Order, thus breaking every rule of etiquette.

More conventional was Alexandra of England,

who

arrived in Berlin draped in an ermine cloak.

During her drive

in the Kantncrstrasse in Berlin, the

horses pulling her gilded coach


so that she

Left:

'Girl

had

at

to

the

make

Mirror".

her

went out of control,

way on

foot, passing

Fedcrigo Zandomeneghi.

Private collection, Milan

Following pages:

'I

ady with

.1

Red

Iat'.

Maillol

v5

at the

back and completely hid the underskirt. Hats

with low crowns were made with

much wider brims

and were even more heavily loaded with feathered


trimmings. Umbrellas and sunshades, often
lace,

became indispensable

Poiret

perfected

made of

accessories.

and launched the masculine-

inspired walking skirt,

which he

called the trotteur.

He shortened skirts to ankle length, against the wishes


of conservative women. He introduced huge muffs
and fur stoles. He also designed underwear, replacing
the muslin or flannel underskirt with petticoats of
light cotton material or silk.

The high

waistline,

however, did not

after three-quarter length coats

these

were

full

last

long

became fashionable;

from the waist downwards and

reached beyond mid-calf. Hats once again were

made

with high crowns and small brims, which came down

Some of
were positively pyrotechnic evening
cloaks in brilliant colours and culottes which provoked

low on

the forehead and hid the eyebrows.

Poiret's dresses

a scandal

Taking

when

they

first

his inspiration

appeared.

from the Far

East, Poiret

Fashion plates. 1893. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

266

Woman

with parasol. Bonnard. Lithograph

Colour lithograph. Toulouse-Lautrec. Private collection

introduced the fashion for kimonos in exotic fabrics

and bright colours:

red, green,

lemon, orange,

violet,

whole range of the palette of the Fauves. Painters


such as Raoul Dufy collaborated with him. In the
atelier run by Martinc, one of Poiret's daughters,
the

women

young
as

studied folk and oriental

art, as

well

African and Polynesian sculpture, in order to gain

inspiration for designs for Poiret's fabrics. This prolific

tailor

also

created and launched

Rosina,

named

time

fashion designer had produced a

which
later

perfume,

after his second daughter. For the

reflected his

own

first

perfume

image, an example that was

followed by Lanvin and Chanel and

all

the great

couturiers in Paris.
Poiret introduced

many

other innovations: the

long, slender sheath; the entraue, a ribbon tied half-

way down the skirt, which at any sudden movement


would break and which made any strenuous activity difficult; amazon dresses; narrow skirts, broken

~*^
r,.

.-y-

Fashion plates. 1893. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

267

'

The Diseuse'.

Picasso.

Museum of Modern Art, Barcelona

by short minaret-shaped

wide

belts as

as

tunics,

the Japanese

new

he looked for

original,

Diaghilev,

in

Stravinsky's

ending

obi.

in trains;

and

Extravagant and

of

ideas in the ballets


Fire

Bird,

Rimski-

in

Korsakov's Scheherazade.

The

first tailor

to travel

round the world

in order

French fashions, Poiret was indefatigable.


Accompanied by nine mannequins, he visited the
capital cities of Europe and America. He also had a
flair for publicity, and would appear on concert platforms where, with a roll of material, a box of pins
and a pair of scissors, he would create a dress in a few
to spread

minutes of skilful improvisation.


Lavish too in his private

attended by the

parties

party was given

life,

elite

he gave splendid

of

One

Paris.

with

at Versailles, a fete

such

a classical

theme gods and nymphs, dryads and satyrs fluttered


around Jove (who was Poiret himself) made taller by
:

beard gilded.
Q-uests

On

that occasion the three

and

hundred

drank nine hundred bottles of champagne.

Fashions for
In the first

was

dress

in a long toga, his hair

and swathed

his cothurni

guished

Men

decade of the twentieth century, masculine


a

uniform black

itself

by the variety

in colour, but

it

distin-

in overcoats: the Ulster,

double-breasted and with detachable cape; the in-

expensive loden,
it

named

was made, with

paletot, often

after the material

a cape

made of wool,

lined with fur, with a

shawl collar and double-breasted the

silk

cloak to wear over tailcoats; the

Don

waisted overcoat, double-breasted with


in the

back; the

side pleats
all

of which

and hood attached; the


or woollen
Carlos,

deep pleat

Prefect, a single-breasted

coat with

the frock-coat and the long overcoat

were

variations of the redingote.

Trousers were striped, checked, and often of white


linen in

summer, made without turn-ups. These


fashion, which became very popular

were an English
at this time.

Hats were also varied bowler


:

erally

hats

worn on informal

hats, soft hats (gen-

occasions) and black

with wide brims, adopted by

Women

intellectuals

felt

and

sometimes imitated male dress. 'The Bar at the


Georges Bottini. 1907. Ghez Collection,
Geneva. Right: Portrait of Count Robert de Montesquieu. Giovanni Boldini. Museum of Modern Art, Paris

Folies Bergere".

26S

269

also artists

who

favoured the black, fluttering

Lavalliere. Later the fashion

ties a la

turned to boaters,

at first

worn only on holiday, but soon adopted for wear in


town as well, although the most typical headgear for
summer remained the panama hat.
For years the dress of fashionable

men

consisted of

the following items: a vest, a shirt with high starched


collar;

long pants reaching

down to the ankles; knee-

length socks held up by suspenders; braces; a


tie-pin;

coat

morning coat and

was worn with

trousers. In

a top-hat.

tie

winter

Gloves were de

and

men, business men and civil serwent about their work, the poorer among them

protecting their sleeves with half-sleeves of alpaca.


special clothes designed for sports such as

and cycling

striped knee-length bathing suits

with knickerbockers. The


tinguished themselves

and their

accessories

by

last

of the dandies

is

suits

dis-

the outlandishness of their

taste for idleness,

epitomised by Oscar Wilde's witty

an attitude

comment 'Work

the curse of the drinking classes'.

Edward

VII, the

most fashionable of elegant men, launched a new


fashion every season, and was imitated by crowds of
stylish idlers.

tures,

This was the epoch of romantic adven-

of suggestive perfumes, of the rustling under-

Illustration

from

'Journal des Demoiselles'

Collection. Below right:

was replaced by
graph. 1905

2~n

The muslin or

petticoats

1907. Bertarelli

flannel underskirt

of light cotton or

silk.

ladies

Folies Bergere,

and of all those

who were at the same time admired


These were women on whom scandal

of pleasure

and despised.

centred, especially concerning their wild extrava-

when a newspaper cost a penny and a


twopence; when a few shillings would pay

gance. At a time

tram ride

for a dinner

and

a theatre,

Cleo de Merode, Carolina

Otero, Lina Cavalieri and Diane de Pougy were

rigueur

clad, professional

Men had

of the French can-can, the whirling dance of the

Moulin Rouge and the

a fur

Boldini, the painter, always wore yellow gloves


and walking sticks were carried by everyone. Thus
vants

skirts

Photo-

English fashion plate. 1907. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

who

beauties

squandered fortunes, and whose lovers

belonged to the highest ranks of society.

caused

controversies

excited

because

it

obliged

women

wear breeches. These notorious breeches

cyclists to

much

criticism, such as: 'difficult to wear,

unaesthetic, anti-feminine, anti-family'.

Emmeline Pankhurst

The invention of the


the

Women
only

in

were not, however, content to be engaged


the world of fashion; many of them fought

which excluded them

against the masculine prejudice

from

and the right to vote.

political activities

telephone, the electric light,

aeroplane and the cinema changed the

quality of

life

the twentieth century. After the

in

first movie camera, a


few years passed before the experimental showing

brothers Lumiere invented the

In

England the leader of the Suffragettes was Emmeline


Pankhurst,

first

who had started her fight towards the end

Illustration

from

'

L' Art

ei

la

Mode'.

1909.

Bcrtarclli

Collection, Milan

of the nineteenth century. She organised processions,

broke shop windows, threw

bomb

at

Lloyd

George's house and, together with her companions,


actually stopped the traffic

by lying down

in the street.

She organised conferences throughout Europe and

North America

to enlist support for her

movement.

She was helped by her daughters Christabel and


Sylvia.

Her own

indefatigable fighting spirit

was

remarkable, and she lived to see her ideas realised;


she died in the year 1928, a decade after English

women were
first

although

the

to the polls they did not elect

one

given the right to vote

time they went

single representative

Other

women

been started

won

of their

own

sex.

founded clubs (women's clubs had

as early as the

French Revolution) and

the right to enter a cafe without an escort.

They

played tennis (with their faces covered in cold cream


to protect

row and

them from

also to cycle.

Luxuriant beards were


Ferdinand Hodlcr

the sun).

But

in

They

learned to skate,

for a long time the bicycle

vogue. The sculptor Vibert.

271

Right:

Giovanni

Portrait of Duchess of Montellano.

Boldini.

Duke of Montellano

Collection,

Madrid

given in the basement of a Parisian cafe on the Boule-

vard des Capucines. The programme showed work-

men coming

out of the Lumiere factory, children

bowl and the arrival of a


The performance was a great success but the appearance of a locomotive on the screen so upset a
woman in the audience that she fainted. Gaumont
made his first film, called La fee aux Choux. Arturo
Ambrosio made the first newsreel of the Susa-Mount
Cenis Motor Race. Audiences usually talked loudly
quarrelling, goldfish in a

train.

without paying attention to the piano that accompanied the events on the

silent screen.

film stars were born:

Douglas Fairbanks, Mary

Soon

the

Pickford and Lillian and Dorothy Gish,


others. All the actresses

among

had heavily made-up eyes

and wore thick layers of powder covering


People began to be alarmed
ing

first

at

their faces.

the spread of motor-

Marinetti, in the columns of Figaro, announced

'A new beauty

has been born.

A car is more beautiful

than the Victory of Samothrace.' For some years the


car

was

still

after the

spoken of in the masculine gender. Then

war d'Annunzio changed

its

sex with this

description: 'This car has the grace, the slim lines, the

Fashionable lady. Bas-relief. 1907. Bertarelli

Collection, Milan

vivacity of a seductress; she also possesses a virtue

lacked by

many women perfect

Women
cars:

Photographic

too began

obedience."

to familiarise themselves with

with cranking handle, carburettor and

portrait. 1885. Bertarelli Collection, Milan.

Material with design of water

lilies.

gears.

Below

Annesley Voysey

2-2

-^.

While some

women

cultivated elegance and femininity,

the suffragettes had no time for such

trivialities.

Photo-

graph. Circa 1903

In

many

hitherto male provinces,

pete with

Above:

A suffragette being forcibly removed from an out-

door meeting

274

at

Enfield in 1914

men on

women sought to com-

equal terms. Photograph. Circa 1903

New

fashions

became

were introduced

as

de rigueur for the motorist.

the sport of

motoring became popular:

caps, dustcoats, button boots

and goggles

Photographs. 1905

Left: Suffragettes selling their

magazine

Clothes began to allow freedom of

at

Henley

movement

regatta

for sport. 1905

The bravest of them took the wheel themselves.


The Duchess of Uzes was the first European woman

decrees of the Parisian couturiers, often expressing

themselves through the inspiration they found

how

to drive. Fashion, in order to protect

paintings and sculptures of the old masters.

women from

the dust and wind, introduced the per-

were created

to learn

grey dustcoat and, on the head,

with

a short veil to protect the face

also

bundled themselves

some designs had collars


composed of multicoloured embroideries imitating

Men

the graded strands of the necklace of Nefertiti; other

peaked caps
their eyes

down

with

over their

and neck.

dustcoats and pulled

in

faces,

special goggles,

while protecting

enormous

objects

shaped like dragonfly's wings.


All

over Europe fashion designers accepted the

Illustration

276

from 'Album

des Blouses Nouvelles'

Models

of the San

toque

fect car-suit: a long-skirted tailored suit, a blouse

with jabot,

that recalled the patterns

in the

Vitale mosaics in Ravenna;

models had very wide

sleeves

bordered with ermine,

from fourteenth-century miniatures; still


other models had short tunics over evening dresses
with a train, taken from a Florentine costume of the
twelfth century. There were cloaks copied from the
copied

Circa 1910. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

Tanagra

figurines. Fra

Angelico and Giotto inspired

designs for children's frocks with short skirts

slit

at

the sides and embroidered with geometrical patterns.


Finally there

was

a dress inspired

costumes of the Old

Kingdom

by the Egyptian

redingote buttoned

below the waist, trimmed with silk and worn over a


straight embroidered dress. The same redingote had
an ingenious system of buttons which could be un-

lower leg. The costume was comby an odd hat made of feathers with a shape
vaguely reminiscent of Mercury's winged helmet.

done

to reveal the

pleted

A new

dance, the tango, had arrived from South

America and Mistinguette immediately launched


after

it

had been introduced into Europe by Argen-

women

tinian

it,

men

escorted by sun-tanned

with

thick side-whiskers, wearing striped trousers, long

double-breasted black coats, highly polished shoes

and butter-coloured gloves. In London,

Paris, Berlin

and Milan, young people and old people, middleclass

and upper-class,

With

their hair

all

went crazy about

combed down over

the tango.

their foreheads,

wearing turbans trimmed usually with osprey, with


and slit on one side
them freedom of movement, with their eyes
blackened with kohl, and their hands on their hips,
their skirts clinging, ankle length

to give

the

pelvis

thrust

aster

forward according to

slightly

Poiret's instructions,

women

danced

During the four years of the


fashion design
at

until the dis-

of war overwhelmed Europe.

came

World War,

First

to a virtual standstill, although

the beginning of the conflict the shoulderline

became sloping, the waistline went up, the neckline


was round and deep and colours were bright.
Broderie angla'xse

trimmed blouses and

Illustration

dresses and

from

'La Chic

Parisienne'. Bertarelli

lection,

Right:
(

Col-

Milan

Portrait

lavalieri.

oi

Lina

Cesare Tallone.

Private collection

Then women became


absorbed in the events around them and dressed
themselves for their work as nurses, postwomen,
tramway conductresses, often preferring to wear the
overalls worn by factory workers. They replaced
hats

assumed

men

in

every

a military shape.

field

of activity they drove


:

trains

and

ambulances, they became factory managers, electricians,

mechanics and plumbers. Society

Europe came quickly


little

At

to an end,

life

and lasted only

longer in America.
a party Wallis Warfield,

who

Duchess of Windsor, appeared in


a

in

knee-length tunic, with the

later

became

the

cloud of chiffon,

hem trimmed with

Right: Fashion plates by Ventura. 1912. Bertarelli Collec-

Milan

tion,

broidered jackets patterned with loops and gold


epaulettes,

rather

trimmed with

short

feathers.

and

boots,

skirts,

hats

Eleonora Duse always wore

when

she was visiting wounded soldiers on the


Queen Elizabeth of Belgium wore cloches
like soldier's helmets when she was not wearing a
nurse's uniform. Queen Helen of Italy favoured dark,

grey

battlefield.

coarse fabrics for her severe dresses; she organised

and canteens, and knitted balaclava helmets

hospitals

and woollen socks.

The dress was cut on Empire lines, decorated


with two single American Beauty roses. In the same
pearls.

season, the future Duchess created a sensation in an-

other model with

gold brocade bodice, trimmed

with large flowers, and


georgette

very

full

flame-coloured

Mansfield,

writers

Towards

though

the end of the war, as

augury of peace, the waistline dropped

skirt.

Women
as

The Boyish Look

of the time,

like

wore somewhat more sober

Katherine

clothes, such

romantic sweeping dark cloaks and white em-

and was overlaid with

from

material

frills,

often

were an

to the hips

made in

the dress. Overcoats

and spindle-shaped, with wider

it

a different

became longer

sleeves.

ribbon or

band was worn round the forehead a slave bangle


was worn on the arm above the elbow, and a thin

gold chain round the ankle. The tailored


popular.

Mata

Hari,

almost masculine dresses, wore


feather

boa and

Cecile Sorel,

suit

was

still

who in her private life preferred


a

dark redingote with

little hat to face the firing squad.

when visiting

the front line,

high boots and a fur coat of military

wore kneecut, which

showed up the ribbon of the Legion d'Honneur.


Then the bombshell exploded hair was cut short,
:

the

first

feminine rebellion against the

which
During the war,

jection in

des

Modes'.
relli

from 'JourDames et des

Left:

278

191 3.

of sub-

women
women had become aware that they

Illustration

nal

state

Berta-

Collection, Milan

Fashion model. [912

had been kept for centuries.

Paris
des

model from

Modes'.

tion,

'Journal des

Dames et

1912. Bertarelli Collec-

Milan

Below and right: In the years preceding


the war, a craze for the tango swept

Europe, with the fashion for osprey


plumes and tight skirts. Illustrations

from

'Journal des

Dawes

et

des Modes'.

1912 and 1914. Bertarelli Collection.

Milan

SO

were the equal of

men

and, as a

cut their hair short. This


ular

new

first

with men, even though some

shyness,

were content merely

reaction, they

women, out of

to shave the

was

a sign

nape of the

The garfonne
in women's

neck, and to allow their plaits to remain.


haircut

was unpop-

hair style

of change not only

whole way of life.

fashion but also in their

After the long gestation period of the


years, the true personality

first

eighteen

of the twentieth century

A kind of madness followed, the madness

of the roaring years of the Charleston and jazz, of


nouveaux

riches

of negro singers

eagerly
like

thirsting

lor

amusement,

Betty Smith, of prohibitionism

and of a frantic interest

in sport.

This was the age of

sports cars and plastic surgery, of Marcel

the cinema. In 1927, silent pictures gave


'Talkies'.

Women

too

made

their

waving and

way

mark on

to the

this age,

Immediately before the war ankles began to make


91 3 and 1914. Bertarelli Collection, Milan
1

their rebellion against tradition,

and their

held them tor centuries.

After the innovation of short hair,

another revolution in the

field

women

started

of fashion: corsets

were discarded and replaced by suspender belts; and


which supported the breasts was

the underbodice

emerged, and the prejudices of previous decades were


abandoned.

through

struggle to free themselves from the fetters that had

replaced by a brassiere which flattened the breasts.

Women

began to display

shorter.

Belts

clothes a

hamen'

their legs as skirts

became

were worn low on the hips, giving


boyish look. There was also the 'Tutank-

line,

inspired

by the Egyptian excavations.

Scarves were draped round the neck of every kind of


dress; zip-fasteners replaced buttons

and the

little

became more voluminous. Evening dresses grew


grew longer. The fashion for
necklaces reached the point where women wore
them everywhere: with bathing costumes on the
veil

shorter while necklaces

their appearance. Illustrations

from

'Journal des

Dames

et des

Modes'.

Illustrations

from

Dames

'Journal des

beach, in cafes, or

at

et des

Modes'. 1914.

Milan

Bertarclli Collection,

home with the lounging pyjamas

now become fashionable.


The amount of underwear was reduced, becoming

which had

bulky and lighter in weight. Combinations such


thin camiknickers were introduced, easily washed,

less

as

requiring no ironing, and with shoulder straps

made

little

gold chains that needed no laundering.

Women

achieved boyish figures by dieting strenu-

of

Most underwear was

ously.

the straight lines that

were

cut straight to emphasise

fashionable.

Before the war, fashion magazines had always

shown special models for ladies over forty, but after


the war a woman was considered young at forty, and
was offered the same designs

Modern

her younger

sisters.

medicine, plastic surgery and diets helped

people to keep

The

as

fit

and retain

their youth.

boy' theme was developed with

'little

num-

ber of variations by the Dolly Sisters, with their


small round heads and flat hair styles, and by Greta

Garbo with her page bob and her soft, large-brimmed


hats. Skirts

continued to get shorter, and belts were

worn almost

at

The

the knees.

great couturiers

who

had

tried to reintroduce

last

submitted to defeat, preached simplicity and

launched

geometrical,

drapery and ornament

flat,

fluence of Picasso's cubism

order to accentuate the

new

at

angular line; the in-

was

felt in

fashion. In

trends, dress collections

were presented by American mannequins, who were


extremely tall and thin. Evening gowns were worn
above the knee, as short as afternoon or morning
dresses,

By

and hair continued

this

women

time

be part of their

lives;

to be short.

had learnt that careers could

they learnt to be independent,

smoke and to engage in active


At last, free to love or to have a career, they
were no longer obliged to marry as the only way of
life open to them. Divorce, too, became easier to
to drink cocktails, to
sports.

many
woman.

obtain in
the

countries and divorce laws favoured

After a few years of being extremely short, skirts

became longer

again, but

knee

and longer behind; evening

in front

were

irregular;

above the
dresses

now sometimes reached to the ground. The waistline


returned to
the

Wall

its

natural place. In 1929, shortly before

Street crash, long evening dresses

The war swept away

all

made

the traditional concepts of ele-

gance. Hair was cut short in bobs and shingles,

boyish look became popular

2S2

as the

definite

comeback. The 'roaring twenties' were

at

blouses and gold and silver lame evening dresses.

an end, and the conflict between boyishness and

Madame

femininitv ceased

the Callot

Vionnet,

who

sisters' atelier,

served her apprenticeship in

went

time, and then started her

to

own

Doucet's for

a short

shop. She was very

able and created 'individual' models, finding for each

woman

Fashion Designers

her

the right fabrics and the line that

She

best.

alities

men

on wooden mannequins of

until, in the reign

Madame

of Louis XIV, the prudish

de Maintenon persuaded the King to allow

fashion design to be controlled


'it

was not decent

by women, because

regained their

as

adviser to Marie Antoinette,

power and did not

men

lose this until the

twentieth century allowed the weaker sex,

if

not

superiority, at least equality in this field. In the 1900


Paris Exhibition,

clients,

and

also studied their proportions

She based her success on the weave of fabrics, and on


the precision, cut and balance of her patterns.

Madame

Paquin displayed

wax

Coco Chanel
Chanel, inspired by the example of Lily Langtry,

launched the simple jersey


in jersey,

thread for

more formal

dresses.

herself, dressed in the latest fashion,

quality

sitting in front

of her

simplicity and classic line.

coiffeuse,

putting the finishing

Among her clients were the


Queens of Belgium, Portugal and Spain, and the
queens of the demi-monde. An able organiser, she was
toilette.

of Chanel dresses lay

Gabrielle

(Coco

brought her up
still

During the war fashion came

to a standstill.

Women

wore

Following pages:

to her friends)

suits

silver

The revolutionary
in

expensive

their

Chanel was born

supposed to have cut up the curtains of the aunts

dress trade.

of an antique dealer, introduced the fashion for lace

She made her

in

poor circumstances. During her childhood she was

elected chairman of the haute couture of the Paris

Her contemporaries, theCallotsisters, thedaughters

dress.

and used jersey woven with gold or

mannequin of
touches to her

their exact dimensions.

men's hands should touch the

that

body of women, or that men's eyes should see their


most intimate secrets'. After the long period in which
Rose Bertin acted

suit

tried to express the different person-

The world of fashion had always been dominated by

of

would

opened

make dresses for her doll. She was


when an Englishman, aware of her

to

very young

talent,

Cambon. During

overalls

millinery shop for her in the


the war,

Coco became

and did men's work. Red Cross parade

The cinema was

who

in

Rue

nurse in a

New York

new form of entertainment which had a grot


Dames et des Modes'. 1919

influence on fashion. Illustration from 'Journal des

>

ian
iDdii
IIBIl

linn
mill
mill
Ill I*

Hi

<

The boyish

figure

came

into

vogue; corsets were used to


flatten the bust and hide feminine

curves.

Fashion

Bertarelli

1925.

plates.

Collection,

Milan

hospital in Deauville.

offered to set her

up

infallible instinct,

At

this

time another friend

turn to the world of fashion. Every collection she

Chanel, with her

created was a personal triumph, even if her sub-

in a boutique.

created for

all

the

women who

were replacing men in offices and factories blue sailor


skirts and mannish pull-overs. She was her own mannequin, making her own costumes and wearing them,

sometimes adding
of

touch of femininity in the form

brooch. With these outfits she immediately

became

On

huge

met the
owner of a

her return to Paris after the war, she

she landed in

became
Unable
286

She dressed the most elegant

holiday.

Cannes her suntan immediately

which still continues.


Chanel left the yacht to re-

women

in the

first line.

world

in

simple grey, black or beige pull-overs, trimmed with

white pique collars and

and

cuffs; or in tricot jersey suits

coats.

She launched the fashion for costume jewellery

made of

success.

Duke of Westminster, who was also the


splendid yacht on which Coco took a long

When

sequent models were only variations of her

crystal or

coloured

glass,

often the only

When

her pearl neck-

said that she

had neither the

ornaments her models wore.


lace

broke one day,

it is

time nor the patience to grade the pearls according to


size

when

rethreading them; she thus launched the


necklaces of pearls

or semi-precious

fashionable, a fashion

fashion

to stay inactive,

stones of different sizes. She created a

for

perfume and

called

it

Chanel

number

Number

Five because five was her

on the 5th of August and


invariably presented her collections on the 5th of
August (for the winter) and the 5th of February (for
the summer).
Jeanne Lanvin became haute couturiere after her
lucky

she was born

success with the dresses she

who

later

became

for her daughter,

the Countess of Polignac. She

found her inspiration


in the colours

made

in the

of Renoir's

greens of the landscape,


palette, in

figures of Botticelli, in the stained glass

the ethereal

windows of

churches (which inspired the famous Lanvin blue),


in the

woods

lit

by autumn sunshine. She imported

gold and silver fabrics and precious brocades from the

Among

East.

her clients were the Princess de Lucinge

and the four wives of Sacha Guitry.

When Yvonne

Printemps returned to the United States

after her

from her husband, she took with her

separation

in

her trunks eighty Lanvin models.

Maggy
fell

Rouff, after taking a degree in medicine,

in love

with the world of fashion. She was the

daughter of the

tailor

who

had created the white

riding habit for the Empress Elizabeth, and

made

for the Princess Czartyoryski,

woman

pilots,

'a

pale,

soft dress,

who

one of the

had
first

almost golden,

fastened at the ankles with drapery, so that

it

seemed

287

dm\

7
from

'The Tango'

'La

gold

like turkish trousers'; a

and

flattering veil

ensemble.
art

Bon

Gazette du

Ton'.

1922.

Milan

Bertarelli Collection,

a beret

belt,

with

leopard jacket completed the

Maggy Rouff studied

every aspect of the

of dressmaking. She opposed the popular black

and beige colour scheme introduced by Chanel. She


created a style for formal occasions

which suggested

the fashions of the past.

Of all

these couturieres, only

Coco Chanel conHer work con-

tinues today as a force in this field.


tinues to be of

importance

in the years after the

Second World War.

/"
Cosmetics
many

After

years of not being used,

became fashionable

tesans

and

for respectable

women. (Cour-

had of course never abandoned

actresses

the use of cosmetics.) Cleo de

make

make-up again

her attractive eyes even

Merode used kohl to


more mysterious. She

claimed to be the daughter of the Baronne de

Merode, Princess of Trelon, and


been educated
rice

powder on her

cheek-bones,

lips

said that she

had

convent of Ursulines. She used

in a

face

and

touch of red on her

and on the lobes of her

ears.

Act-

wore bizarre make-up. Lily Elsie, a star of


musical comedy, shaded her eyelids in purple and
resses often

grey for the stage, and darkened her

and purple and her cheeks

from

coral to wood-rose.

powder

to her chin

with

nostrils

with red

in different shades

of red,

She applied ochre-coloured


a rabbit's

paw, and coloured

the tip of her nose and the lobes of her ears with

salmon-coloured

paste.

Her

immobility of a Chinese

face thus acquired the

doll.

'The Lady Wants No Children'. Kees van Dongen. 1925.


Private collection. Rightilt was smart to wear jewellery

even with bathing

suits.

1924. Private collection

288

'The Bather'. Kees van Dongen.

'

After the First

World War,

launched cosmetics

as

it

was

woman who

big business. Elizabeth

Arden

had long been aware of the need to care for feminine


beauty by scientific methods. Formerly, women had
covered their faces with

rice

powder and used kohl

or burnt matches to blacken their eyebrows. Apart

from

few

really elegant

women who knew how to

apply coloured paste on the

women

reddened

adour had done


introduced

lips,

their lips as

by

the great majority of

Madame

Pomp-

de

biting them. Elizabeth

new creams

Arden

into the field of cosmetics,

prepared according to a prescription obtained from


Elizabeth

Madame

who had found

Hubbard,

Recamier's notes on beauty.

this

among

With

the help

of chemists and other experts

at the start of the twenArden began to experiment with


lanoline, benzoin, almond oil, hamamelis and other
extracts, with which she made cleansing milk and
nourishing creams, tonics and lotions. These were
used to combat wrinkles, to cleanse the skin and to
nourish and rejuvenate it. The company she founded
now also makes facepowders, lipsticks, nail varnish
and massage creams, and has spread a network of

Elizabeth

ties,

beauty

clinics

throughout the world.

Helena Rubinstein,
Arden, was born into
but

left

tiara

contemporary of Elizabeth

a well-to-do family in

Cracow,

her parents and her country to emigrate to

and necklace by Cartier.

Illustration

from

Advertisements in 'La Gazette du Bon Ton'. 1924. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

'La

Gazette du Bon Ton'. 1924. Bertarelli Collection. Milan

A
***
***->

290

~^s.

fur coat

by Weil, and an ad-

vertisement for the jewellery


shop, 'Tecla', in Pans. Illustrations

from

Ton'.

Bertarelli

'La Gazette du Ben

Collection.

Milan

291

by Doucet.

Right: Designs

Illustration

from 'La Gazette


Milan

du Bon Ton'. 1922. Bcrtarclli Collection,

Left

Designs byjeanne

Lanvin.

Illustrations

from 'La Gazette du


Bon Ton'. Bertarelli
Collection, Milan

*&k

'The Jungle'. Fabric design. Raoul Dufy. Illustration from


1922. Bertarelli Collection
'La Gazette du Bon Ton
.

Australia.

She

facturing

cosmetics.

also built

up

vast

empire manu-

She started by producing

cream her mother had given her to protect her skin


from the Australian sun. This cream was such a
success that

facture

it

on

Madame

Rubinstein started to

a large scale

from

this

of factories and beauty

clinics has

Prince Gourielli, and

at

beginning

manua

chain

grown. She married

her death in 1965 she

left a

personal fortune of one hundred million dollars. Like

Model by Madelaine Vionnet.

Illustration

from 'La

Gazette du Bon Ton' Bertarelli Collection, Milan


.

292

Elizabeth Arden, she


initiative

cally
last

owed

her wide success to her

and her hard work. These were two typi-

modern women, though they were born

century,

women,

that

who
of the

developed

in the

profession for

'beautician'.

Another profession born

in the twenties

of the interior decorator. This


Elsie

new

field

was

that

was developed by

de Wolfe, an American actress

who

left

the

become Lady Mendl. It was she who aimed


at giving more appeal to contemporary furniture,
which at the time was functional and lacking in
warmth. Her decorative designs were complementary to the short skirts and straight lines of women's
stage to

clothes reflecting the

Illustration

mood

of this period.

from La Gazette du Bon Ton

1922. Bertarelli Collection,

Milan

293

In general the decade

from 1920

to 1930

is

almost

invariably thought of as extravagant: prohibition,


jazz, a

new

sexual morality. These

of enormous achievement

were

actors

Gloria

from Greta Garbo to Charlie Chaplin, from


Swanson to Rudolph Valentino. Dadaism,

also years

Picasso's cubist period, Klee

literature

ism had

and German expression-

Virginia Woolf, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Thornton Wilder

was the age of


mass culture. Magazines of huge circulation began to

and William Faulkner are but

reach millions of readers.

in the field

of

few of the names

that

shaped the age. This decade also produced unrivalled

all

had

their influence. This

The radio from 1920 onwards devoted more and more time to literary, artistic
and musical

activities.

Negro rhythms

created

new

dances like the Charleston and the black bottom. Al


In the twenties skirts were worn knee-length and
even shorter. Fashion drawing. 1927. Bertarelli
Collection, Milan

Jolson

won enormous popularity with young people

song 'Sonny Boy' was

a huge success. Josephine


by storm. Women stood out, tall
and slim, in their narrow sheaths, with their short
hair hidden under cloches drawn down over the eyes.
They plucked their eyebrows, wore long earrings
and held immensely long cigarette-holders.
Chinoiserie was still fashionable. Rare pieces of
Ming or Tang dynasties were highly prized; lachis

Baker took

Paris

quered screens, ivory


lotus flowers

seeds

statuettes, vases

and bowls

were used

for

Chinese origin, was

filled

decoration.

a favourite

decorated with

with gilded poppy

Mah-jong,

of

game.

This was an age of emancipation and also of flux

between the

different classes. Chanel's dresses

were

elegant without appearing expensive in an obvious


way. Whereas before the war ten yards of material
went into the making of a skirt, now only one was

Fashion plate from La Rinascente autumn and winter


catalogue. 1926-7. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

Close-fitting cloche hats

women
tarelli

294

made of

felt

helped to give

the boyish look. Fashion drawing. 1927. Ber-

Collection, Milan

The comfort and freedom of movement


to which women had become accustomed would
never have been possible in the costly, cumbersome

The Honourable Mrs Reginald Fellowes was one

required.

clothes of the early years

The
this

of the century.

psychological explanation for the clothes of

period can be found in the struggle for feminine

emancipation. Most

women

had gained the right to

and had improved their legal position and


economic status, and their clothes became more
vote,

masculine,

Fashion

as

an expression of this change.

of the exceptional

women of this period, and also one

of the most elegant. Her elegance was achieved with


the utmost simplicity. One typical outfit of hers had
a

jacket covered in sequins, cut like a man's dinner

jacket.

She wore

this

with

green carnation in the

button-hole. She often arrived


party in a simple

silk dress.

at

an elegant cocktail

She had dozens of these

silk dresses in different colours,

which she adorned

with jewels, large gold cuff links and Indian neck-

drawings from 'Femina'.

1928 and 1929. Bertarelli Collection,

Milan

295

Shi

Fashion drawings. Above:

From

1929. Above right:

1 *

>*

From

1927. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

laces.

She wore jewels even when dressed for the

beach. She loved to shock people through her unconventional dress, for example by appearing bare-

when everybody

was wearing a
hat. Once at a dinner-dance, she became aware that
another woman was wearing the same dress as she;
this was of black tulle, trimmed with a large spray of
headed

Ascot

at

ostrich feathers.
pair

else

She asked the waiter to bring her

of scissors, and quite calmly, without interrupt-

black servant extravagantly dressed. She sometimes

dressed in white flannels, gold sandals and an enor-

mous cow-boy

of rock

roses, or pieces

ornaments

in her unusual

enormously

successful

the Marchesa Casati. Deathly pale, with orange col-

oured
a

hair, her eyes

heavy black

of

Rome

296

line,

enlarged by belladonna and with

she liked to

walk round the

streets

leading a leopard on a leash, or followed by

a tiny

hats of the

amber

as

woman

writer,

was

with her book Gentlemen

She too was typical of the twenties.

woman,

the stoics,

wide

pre-war period did not

twenties she found her true


short,

crystal or

home.

Anita Loos, an American

Being
period was

art

with

Prefer Blondes.

this

her eccentricities,

on the decorative

taste for alabaster vases filled

used them

Another eccentric personality of

all

of her time, with her

ing the conversation, cut off the ostrich feathers, and


as a fan.

Despite

hat.

the Marchesa had an influence

bought her

hats

departments of the big

self:

and huge

she cut her hair very

and dresses
stores,

skirts

suit her. In the

in the children

and suddenly

fascinating personality emerged.

new,

'>

'""^S-!
i

i.

''"',

I'M
v;

Fashion drawing. 1929. Bcrtarclli Collection, Milan

Side
tric

by

side

women,

gence,

York,

who

with

this international

group of eccen-

gifted with taste, elegance

and

intelli-

influenced the fashions in London,

Paris, Berlin

New

and Milan, the youth of the period

danced the Charleston and displayed the uncouth

manners that were typical of the time. Their language


was vulgar, their attitude aggressive. They drove cars
too

fast,

and smoked too

many

was

a residue

ties'

left

everywhere a wreckage of despair.

whole

series

of devices: side-draperies,

skirts,

but

from the nine-

Skirts

suddenly lengthened

decade the world was stricken

by an economic crisis which had momentous results.


The slump began in the autumn o( 1929. with the
crash of the New York Stock Exchange, which shook
the financial structure o\

the

whole world

to

its

'roaring twen-

Towards the close of this period dress designers


made ever) effort to bring in longer skirts. They tried

the

down

The

closed with a slump that swept the world like a

hurricane, and

it

was not

ofbeing round the


a

longer

[930 that they succeeded.

until

hips,

skirts

and transparent oxer-

at the trout

the waist slipped back into


this

tragic.

back than

but their

teenth century.

At the end of

continent escaped the catastrophe,

at the

cigarettes,

obtrusive bad manners helped to break


excessive formality that

No

foundations.

and the consequences were

to mid-call or lower,

its

and

normal position instead

here

it

had stood for nearly

decade.

Unless

from
that

we

believe, in defiance of

the past, that fashion

women

is

are 'dictated to'

all

the evidence

purely arbitrary, and

by

handful of Pans

297

we

designers,

change

can hardly

to see in this a real

fail

in the social climate.

There had been an

gaiety about the twenties, but people

world were beginning


not go on for ever,

If

we

over the

its

Great American

this

period with 1820,

when

waists,

we

can

having

been abnormally high ever since the French Revolution,

vogue

for

wide

sleeves a

remained obstinately

suddenly slipped back to their right place.

Waist-lines in the right place indicate a desire for

normality, even an acceptance of paternalism, and a


reaction against female emancipation.

making

It

is

no

ac-

that

women

these

two

make

periods. In 1820

a distinction

and on

a conflict

between the tendency

paternalism,

are content to accept

narrow

bear children.

all

between

previous oc-

mean
some degree of

It

hips that they are reluctant to

has been suggested that

it

was

fear

of war that kept hips slim throughout the decade


which saw the outbreak of the Second World War.
In the years to

come,

They began

of Hitler.

necessary to

sleeves

small hips. In psychological terms tight waists

femininity they had

it is

wide

the hips rather than the waist look small.

There was obviously

with the

Yet

Toulouse-Lautrec but hips

themselves might be said to have had the effect of

cident that the fashions of the early 1930s coincided


rise

la

slim. Indeed, the

towards tight waists and the tendency towards

death-knell.

are interested in historical analogies

compare

of

to realise that the party could

that, in fact, the

Slump had sounded

all

air

tricity

to

grow

women

set aside

tried to recover the

during the twenties.

their hair again after the eccen-

of the 'Eton crop', and longer hair made

possible to

it

im-

wear the cloche hat. This type of headgear

natural position

therefore disappeared. All kinds of new experiments

presaged a return to tight-lacing, and, in an attempt

were tried. Schiaparelli created a sensation by sticking


what looked like a sock on her head and calling it a
hat. Most of the new hats were extremely small and
perched forward over one eye.

casions, the return

to

make

its

waists look even smaller, either

or voluminous
thirties this

298

of the waist to

skirts,

wide

sleeves

or both. In the early nineteen-

did not happen. There

was

a passing

Drawing by

Steinberg.

Fashion Today

From 'The Art of Living'

From

the Thirties to the Sixties

Schiaparclli

was one of the most

influential dress de-

signers of these years. (The story of Chanel's success

woman

has already been told; a

of la haute
a

in the highest

ranks

inaugurated something of

couture, she has

revolution by her introduction of 'working-class

modes'. She was accused of having introduced the

apache sweater into the Ritz, but her genius lay pre-

cisely

making ordinary

by some

clothes into high fashion

significant touch.) Schiaparclli entered the

almost by accident with variations on the

field

mode

sweater

in the face

already launched by Chanel. She flew

of what had been considered good

taste,

but the results were oddly attractive and she soon

had

a fashionable clientele,

whom

she dressed

for

highly individual taste

including Greta

years.
in

Even

Garbo

Schiaparelli's

Marlene Dietrich

in

'Blonde Venus'. 1932

colour was accepted and

her 'shocking pink' became famous.


In

one sense the innovations of both Chanel and

Schiaparclli

reflected

general tendency towards

the disappearance of class distinction in

daytime

clothes.

some

engaged

in

tor this

purpose

sisting

Women
sort
a

of

all

classes

women's

were now

of work, and there had evolved

kind of working uniform, con-

of that essentially English costume, the

made. Trousers,

sometimes worn
Right: Culottes

in the

form of rather

tailor-

full slacks,

were

for sports, but not yet for shopping.

were fashionable
Milan

for

beach wear. 1930.

Bertarelli Collection,

Underwear had become


and the one-piece
foundation garment gave

lighter

women

the

new

sleek line.

Fashion drawing. 1930

Left:

Greta Garbo. 1932

3d

Fashions in 1937. Bertarelli Collection, Milan

There was a marked distinction between day clothes


and evening clothes. Even girls in the lower income

in Paris

groups, although they might wear factory dun-

the

garees during the day, assumed


our' dress, based usually
that

worn by

dance

on

favourite film

some kind of 'glamsimplified version of


star,

for

going to

hall at night.

This approach of the clothes of lower

classes to that

was made possible by two


factors: one was the increasing efficiency and speed of
mass production; the other was the development of
technology. The American depression had hit hard
of the wealthier

at

the profits of designers in Paris. In the twenties

fashion had
in

classes

become

big business, the export market

1923 being worth nearly 2,500,000,000 francs.

The

principal fashion houses, such as Lanvin, Lelong,

Molyneux, Patou, Piguet, Vionnet, had added new


workrooms, some of them employing as many as
five hundred people to cope with the demand, and
until 1930 it was the habit of American buyers to
302

purchase several dozen copies of each selected model

and retail them to a wealthy clientele. After


slump prohibitive customs duties began to make

a duty of up
might be imposed on the cost oi the
model. Models imported, on a temporary basis, for
the purpose of copying, were however allowed into
America duty free. The main American market
this

luxury trade almost impossible, for

to 90 per cent

therefore began to consist of those mass producers

who

purchased

linen).

with

toiles

(that

is,

patterns cut out in

These were sold for about 100,000 francs each,

full

directions for

making them

versions could be sold to

chain stores tor

.is

up. Simplified

wide public through the

little as fifty

dollars,

and firms

like

Macy's of New York disposed of thousands of them.


In the last thirty years,

signers have not

however, the French de-

had entirely

their

own way

in the

United States. Many American names have come to


the fashion fore. Charles fames was already recognised in the thirties as a vital influence in haute couture,

Evening dress by France


VramanL Fashion drawing. 1937.

Fashion in 1937. Bertarelli Collec-

Milan

tion,

Bertarelli Collection.

Milan

together with Mainbocher, Valcntina and the well-

known Hollywood designers Gilbert Adrian and


Howard Greer. Among the most successful designers
of ready-to-wear clothes (both
the

medium

price

brackets)

expensive and

in the

have

been

Hattie

Carnegie, Arnold Scaasi, Pauline Tngere, Galanos.


Claire Potter,

Norman

Norell, B. H.

Fogarty, Rudi Geinrcich.

Bill Bl.iss.

Wragge, Anne

Geoffrey Beene,

Ben Zuckerman, Adele Simpson and Bonnie Cashin.

The numerous
given

in

fashion groups and fashion awards

America

terest in fashion,

are evidence

of the American in-

and perhaps there

is

no country

in

the world where the innumerable fashion magazines

command
The
Top

right:

tarelli

a larger sale.

other factor which helped to bring fashion

Mrs Wallis Simpson,

later the

Collection, Milan. Centre right

Milan. Below

right:

Wide

the twenties and thirties.

Duchess of Windsor. 1937. Ber-

A hat of

93 8. Bertarelli Collection,

were the fashion for men throughout


Jean Harlow and Robert Taylor. 1930
trousers

303

Bette Davis

Maggy Rouff design.

1938

within reach of a wide public was the growing use of


synthetic fabrics.

Even

in the twenties,

would have

it

been impossible for the mass of women to wear the


new short skirts to good effect without the invention of artificial silk stockings.

the use of

cedented
ture:

man-made

level,

in fact

even

At the present tunc,

fibres has

in the

reached an unpre-

production of

they are no longer regarded

substitutes but are accepted in their

Men's

la

clothes,

never

own

quickly

so

haute couas

cheap

right.

modified

as

women's, continued the steady progress towards informality which had been noticeable since the end of
the First

World War. The

altogether, and the

frock-coat disappeared

morning coat and

silk

hat

were

seen only on ceremonial occasions. The ordinary daywear was now the lounge suit, and from 1924 until
the end of the thirties it was worn with the very wide
trousers known as 'Oxford bags'. Soft collars re-

placed the

stiff

other sports,

white linen variety, and tor golf and

men wore baggy

'plus fours', often

with

knickerbockers called

a gaily

coloured

'Fair Isle'

sweater, a fashion popularised by the Prince of Wales,

who

sports clothes

became

stall,

playing

tennis

far scantier

Forest

until

America,

in

But

it

was not

1933 that Miss Alice Marble of San Francisco

ventured to appear

began

Hills

legs.

at this

in shorts

above the knee.

period to play golf

ride horseback in breeches instead

Women

in trousers

and to

of the traditional

side-saddle costume.
i)t~

the

Second World

War

than

approached, the minds (perhaps one should say the

we

unconscious minds) of the leading designers seemed

they had ever been, even in the twenties. In 1930


find the first backless bathing costumes

at

appeared on court with bare

As the cataclysm

loved striking patterns.

Women's

Claudette Colbert. 1937

which were,

between the unacknowledged fear of


hope of peace. The first was shown by a

to be divided

war and

however, no more backless than the evening dresses


of the period. And in 193 1 Mrs Fearnlcy-Whitting-

sudden shortening of the

Coco Chanel. 1937

A beauty

the

parlour

skirt, until it

was almost

as

and femininity.' Other slogans of the time were:


'Grandmother was right, because she concentrated on

slimming her

waist.' In Paris

all

the designers

seemed

of the same mind, and in London, Lachasse,

to be

having displayed

his slim-waisted collection, sent his

mannequins out again, without the dresses, to show


that they had been wearing boned corsets underneath.
tempting to think that

It is

expanded
fashion

At
and

first

in

really tight waists and


might have swept the world of
if there had been no war.
skirts

the

March

war seemed

to

make

when

all

the great Paris houses

1940,

little

difference,

launched their collections, they found plenty of


buyers, both American and French. Social

life

went

on, and one reporter recorded that in the Ritz 'they


are

all

dining gracefully again, in

Styles of 1940

The

their toes'.

but the victorious Germans


short as
a

it

had been

determined

in the late twenties

the second

effort to bring in tight-lacing,

by

and even

of the crinoline. Fashion commentators, re-

a revival

turning from Paris in 1938, announced that 'Paris has

new woman

decreed

gloved

and

[Schiaparelli

evening

in

corseted

and

She will be veiled and

even

button-booted.

had invented eight-button boots for

coloured kid.] There must be frou-frou

over
the

of

artists

dress

fashions.

skirts that

touch

Battle of France put an end to that,

all

made every

effort to

win

kinds during the Occupation, and

produced some extravagant

designers

The export

trade,

Great Britain was

French haute couture

as

however, was dead.

as

completely cut off from

it

had been during the Nap-

oleonic wars. Indeed, once clothes rationing was in-

troduced

in

June of 194 1, fashion in England almost


Women were compelled to wear

ceased to exist.

Fashions during the war were influenced by military

uniforms. Auxiliaries training

A woman

306

pilot in the

Second World

War

Barracks

at

the

Duke of York's

An embroidered

what

dress

worn

in

1943

clothes they had, and housewives as well as

factory workers took

making

wearing

to

stockings unnecessary.

many women began

thereby
skirts,

go about with bare

to

some of them even painted

down

slacks,

Even with

their legs

legs;

and drew

lines

the back to imitate the seam of the stocking.

Hats were replaced by head-scarves and

weather by

in

wet

hoods.

plastic

somewhat different. It was


period of the war that Biki, the

Reactions in Italy were

most

at the

difficult

granddaughter of Puccini, launched herself in Milan


as

dress

Germana

Another

designer.

talented

woman,

Marucelli, fought to establish a distinctive

Italian style.

Both during

the

war and

after, the

'King

of Fashion' was Farcioni.When the hostilities were


over, a

number of society women founded

couture. Aristocratic ladies like

(who with her husband


signer,

migrated to

Fabiani, himself a talented de-

Paris)

and Giovanna dei Principi


field.

Three

dressmakers from Parma, the Fontana

sisters,

Caracciolo-Giretti entered the fashion


little

maisons de

Simonctta Colonna

created a couture house of international reputation,

with branches

in

New York

and London. Other

names were Federico Emilio Schubert, Austrian by


origin but Neapolitan by birth; Gattinoni, Maria
General Montgomery's
women's coats

duffle coat influenced designs for

-'
,s*t

Antonelli, Jole Veneziani in Milan

Emilio Pucci in

appearance and from square, padded shoulders. The

Florence; and Enzo, the couturier of the nouvelle

new silhouette had narrow shoulders, the waist in the


right place, a new emphasis on the bust, and a longish

vague.

supremacy

All these challenged French

But

after the

war

Paris

in design.

once more reasserted

herself,

skirt

with a wide hem. In England the Board of Trade

appealed to

women

not to waste material by adopt-

new fashion. This was all in vain, for the 'New

leading names being Balenciaga, Balmain, Carven,

ing the

Dior, Gres, Givenchy, GrifTe, Jacques Fath, Jean

Look' swept the world.

Desses, Jean Patou, Lanvin, Castello,

Manguin, Paquin and Nina

tier,

In

Britain,

Carpen-

Ricci.

England, too, fashion revived.

Group of Great

Mad

which had been founded

in

was encouraged by the Board of Trade in 1941


to form an Incorporated Society. This was done in
the following year, the original group of Norman

Worth, Madame Mosca,


Digby Morton, Victor Stiebel and Hardy Amies,
being joined by Molyneux and Charles Creed. Later
additions to the membership were Mattli, Michael
Sherard, Lachasse, John Cavanagh and Ronald
Peter Russell,

Patterson. Clothes rationing, however, continued in


for some years after the end ot the war.
Even when, early in 1949, a large range of garments
became 'coupon free', there was still a shortage of
materials and prices were high.

England

made all the more aston'New Look', launched in

This shortage of materials


ishing the success of Dior's

the spring of 1947,

which was

a deliberate

attempt to

break away from women's short-skirted, tubular

Christian Dior, 1947

In

1947 Dior launched the revolutionary

which swept the Western world

308

for

It

what seemed

was part of the nostalgia of


the more settled world of

the past.

The Fashion

1935,

Hartnell,

women

New

Look

The 'New Look'


throw-back, and

it

was,

however,

essentially

was not long before

made

a typical

appearance. Balenciaga

'post-crisis'

dress

was

the field with his chemise or sack dress,

first in

and some nine years

produced

first his

its

after his

'New

H-Line and then

then the general silhouette of

more and more resembled

his

Look', Dior

A-Line. Since

women's clothes has


modes of the mid-

the

twenties, that

is

so long as they

do not abandon skirts


In some cases the

altogether and adopt trousers.

young men and

clothes of

women

today are almost

indistinguishable, and equally informal.


In the period

immediately

War, however, men's

after the

clothes

action (comparable with the feminine


the

'New

meant an attempt

of fifty years before:


fitting jackets
a

curious re-

throw-back of

Look') to Edwardian modes. For the upper

classes, this

worn

Second World

showed

to

reproduce the

narrow trousers and

styles

close-

buttoned rather high. With these was

small bowler hat perched forward on the

modes were exaggerated and modified


by the East End 'Teddy Boys'. Their trousers were
even narrower than those of fashionable young men.
Their jackets were longer, having a much more pronounced shoulder line. They did not adopt the bowhead. These

indeed they abandoned hats altogether and


wore their hair rather long.
However, by the beginning of the sixties both the

ler hat:

neo-Edwardians,

who

had

their clothes

made

for

them in Savile Row, and the 'Teddy Boys', who


bought theirs in Whitechapel, were already outmoded. The bulk of young men belonging to the
newly prosperous lower middle-classes never took
to these styles.

There was nothing nostalgic about

them: they had

no

desire to return to 'the

After the war nylon stockings

became an

essentia! part of

every woman's wardrobe. Nylon factory

bad old

24

The

difference

old and
in

new

between the
measured

looks,

centimetres

>

V
?i

days',

and their clothes were no longer an attempt

They had

imitate those of the gentry.


ideas,

on which they

to

own

their

insisted.

were shown more


by their
shape. Clothes quite literally filtered down, passing
from hand to hand until they ended with the rag
merchant. Class distinction was often merely a
Fifty years

by

ago

social differences

the condition of a man's garments than

matter of personal cleanliness. All

today
is

in

clean.

has vanished

this

England nobody wears rags and everybody


;

The new

degree but

a difference in

shows

is

not

a difference in kind.

For

difference that

itself

clothes have shaken off (or are beginning to shake off)

the superstition of gentility.

We
in

seem indeed to be on the eve of

masculine

revolution

attire just as drastic as that

which oc-

The

curred around the year 1800.

essence of that

revolution was to substitute, tor the embroidered

knee-breeches and

coats,

century,

country clothes

that

of the eighteenth

ruffles

and

tightened

smartened

version

of

the clothes ot the fox-

is,

hunting country gentleman. The innovation of Beau

Brummell and other Regency dandies was

to

wear

this outfit in town.

Today it seems as if men's clothes can only be modified in

manner: by promoting sports

this

into the category of 'ordinary wear'.

wear tends
itself.

By

(or has

tended in the

clothes

But ordinary

past) to formalise

the second half of the eighteenth century,

the cut-away tailcoat of the sporting squire had be-

come

the tailcoat of

new smartened

wear became

clothes, that

the lounge

War,

this

is

lounge

suit

suit.

had

The age of the

great coutur-

Above

Jacques Fath.

iers.

1957.

left:

Left:

poses on the

Coco Chanel
left.

1955. Right:

Emilio Schubert. 1955

310

evening

full

dress.

Ordinary

version of country

After the First

itself

become

World

formal, and

something

Once
from

was required for energetic


sports outfit was brought in,

again a

golf: the 'plus fours'

the 'sports coat'

war

the process

much

jacket,

was

The

in

and was

'Government
was the Navy's con-

selling

duffle-coat

blouse or Eisenhower

Army's. The motor

the

town. After the

carried a stage further

battle-dress

the

tribution;

World War, young men were

by the shops

aided

Surplus Stores'.

time

flannel trousers. Just

combination even

this

this

of the twenties. Sometimes

was worn with

before the Second

wearing

pursuits.

else

found

cyclist

in

Surplus Stores a whole collection of useful garments,

of which the
ample.

He

sleeveless leather coat

upon

also seized

is

an obvious ex-

flying kit, finding the

airman's kapok-lined jacket just the thing for high

speed on the roads.

Twenty

years after the end of the war,

the kind of picture that


the situation

is

we

can see

emerging. In some ways

is

simply an echo of what has happened

before: the increasing use of sports clothes as ordi-

nary

dress.

But

now

and greater variety

a far
is

wider range

is

available

There are belted

possible.

'

sports coats, leather jackets, 'pilot coats', 'campers'

cardigans, ski 'anoraks' or parkas with hoods.

The

significant thing

reign of gentility

is

formal for more than

was something
in town) from
seems

at last to

longer

feels

it

about

over.
a

What

this

is

that the long

kept men's clothes

century was the idea that there

'caddish' in
a

all

any departure

(at least

very rigid norm. This restriction

have been overcome. Today

necessary to

show by

belongs to

a certain social caste,

A Givenchy

design. 1957

man no

his clothes that

Fath model. 1957

he

though most men,

Stiletto heels

were an

Italian

contribution to fashion

upper income bracket

in the

at least, still cling to

dinner jacket for formal occasions.

We

The way

the

open

is

to every kind

of innovation.

some

changes in the years that He ahead.

startling

Perhaps

we

are

on the eve of a

of our whole attitude

drastic reassessment

to clothes.

the long history of fashion

shall certainly see

Looking back over

we see many beautiful and


men and women. Are

extravagant garments both for

we

ever likely to see

and

social historians are

them again? Anthropologists


agreed that clothes in the past

have been worn for three main reasons: for warmth


and protection, to mark the social status of the wearer,
and to

attract the opposite sex.

which of these three reasons

The

It is

is still

pertinent to ask

valid.

early civilisations enjoyed hot climates,

and

it

was not until men migrated to colder regions that


what are called 'arctic clothes' became necessary. The
people of the countries of Northern Europe still
require protection against the cold, but

already
ing

may

United

States,

where

we

can

central heat-

now almost universal, that indoors such protec-

is

tion

see, in the

no longer necessary. The

is

be roofed over and the

cities

streets

of the future

themselves

arti-

warmed, so it is probable that our descendants


wear clothes lighter than we do.

ficially

will

The second motive,


is

that of indicating social status,

plainly obsolescent. In the past

it

was taken

for

granted that the clothes of the noblemen should be

more

splendid than those of ordinary folk.

Even

sourest seventeenth-centurv Puritans conceded

the
this,

A new

development in fashion, in the fifties and sixties,


was the appearance of 'boutiques' which specialised in
slightly off-beat clothes. Fashions from the Ken Scott
Boutique, Milan. 1965

--_

312

Following pages > Fashion shows have

become

great social

gatherings evoking something of the glamour which


surrounded court life in other times

and the notion persisted

until the

Even in the nineteenth century

French Revolution.

gentleman enjoyed

the distinction of a better material and better cut. But

been such

in recent years there has

provement

in

tremendous im-

ready-to-wear garments, and such a

vast increase in the range

of sizes available, that

it is

made by a bespoke tailor


from one bought 'off the peg'. The clothes of all
classes continue to resemble one another more and
more. In Communist China this tendency has been
pushed to an extreme. The men (and often women)
often difficult to

the suit

tell

in the streets are as alike as a


as 'class'

colony of ants. Indeed,

supposed to have been abolished,

is

be suspect to

show any

class distinction in clothes.

There remains the third motive: the


attract the opposite sex. This, unless

most evident

in

women

countries

this

whether what
probably

It

clothes

may

is

we

women's

clothes, but in

Even

in the

and the question

so,

will, in a

Women's
work and clothes

and pullovers (or even dungarees)

clothes as glamorous and seductive as the

designers can

"SH

make them.

fwwrp

.-.

'

Above

right:

Culottes for

entertaining at

IfSre^i^H
Jt5> Ik^a
!
'i

^^<rt

wStf^^.

^S^r^MrW

Is r

Western

arises as to

daytime, and in the evening something more

feminine

jMBr

many
work

modified form.

divide into clothes for

m^C.

fated

recognise as 'fashion' will survive.

for leisure trousers


in the

C'i

is

are already adopting for

clothes similar to those of men.

democracies

desire to

mankind

probably be always with us. Naturally,

to die out, will


it is

would

it

{*

"''t,

X"*
&.

Jw\

home, de-

signed by Emilio Pucci.

A brooch in white
gold with sapphires, designed by Pomodoro
Right:

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f^

jp
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Ken

Scott

Boutique, Milan

313

*Jm

-/-

r
1

-^

<

^r

French
'

leisure

'ingt Arts'

316

wear

for teenagers

from the magazine

An example

of American
by Bonnie Cashin. 1964

leisure

wear

in suede, designed

cocktail dress, designed for teenagers

zine

'

from the maga-

Vingt Ans'

<=J

The

clothes of the future: trouser suit

by Courreges, 1964

sequined dress by Courreges, 1965

317

INDEX
Numbers
Abelard. Peter. 75
Acacius, 61

Adimari. Cassone, 105


Adrian. Gilbert. 303
Adrienne, 194
Agnesi. Gaetana. 205
Agrippina. 58

Ahmasi.

94
Aisse, Mademoiselle. 194
Akhetaten, 15, 18

Archduke of Austria. 160

Album

des Blouses Nouvelles, 276

Cartier. 290

Bernard de Ventadour, 72
Bernhardt. Sarah. 252
Berr\. Duke of. 230
Bertelli. Pietro. 122-3, 132-3
Bertha, wife of Eudes I, Count of Blois,

Alcibiades, 42

Aldobrandini. Olimpia, 165

Alencon lace. 164. 166. 202


Alexander VI, pope. 122
Alexander the Great. 36, 38, 42
Alexandra. Queen of England, 263
Alix, Czarina, 263
Almond oil, 290
Alpaca. 241.270
Amadeus VI of Savoy, 108
Amadeus VII of Savoy, 108

Amazons. 21
Ambrosio, Arturo, 272
III. 15

America. North. 113. 138, 179


Amies. Hardy. 308
15, 21

Analytical Institutions for the Use of the


Italian Youth (Dacier), 206
Aner, 32
Angelico. Fra, 277
Angouleme. Madame d'. 125

Ankhesenamun. Queen, 20
Anne of Brittany, 101
Anniballi. Domenico, 204
Annunzio, Gabriele d", 263. 272
Anoraks, 311
Antimony powder. 26
Antonelli. Maria, 308
Antonia, wife of Drusus. 50

Aphrodite, 37
Aprons. 149
Aquinas. Thomas, 84
Arcadia (literary society). 176. 179
Arcadius, Emperor. 60
Arden. Elizabeth. 290

68
Benin, Marie Jeanne, 199. 202, 212
Bertrada, wife of King Pepin. 65
Biki, 307
Bikinis, Roman, 53, 53
Blarenberghe. van. 197
Blanchard, Madame, 260
Blanche of Castille, 84
Blass, Bill, 303
Bleaches (for hair), 36. 49
Bloomer. Amelia Jenks, 231
Bloomers. 261
Boas, feather. 263, 278
Boaters. 270
Boethius. 87
Boilly. L. L.. 222
Boissard, J., 130
Boldim. Giovanni. 270, 269. 273
Boleros. 263
Boleyn, Anne. 122
Bombasine. 190
Bon Genre. Le. 230
Bon Marche, Paris. 256
Bonaiuti. Andrea. 75
Bonaparte, Napoleon, 216
Bonaparte. Caroline. Queen of Naples,
228
Bonnard, 266
Bonnart.
Bonnets, 82. 221, 232. :.Borghese. Pauline. 229
Borgia. Lucrezia, 94, 118
Born. Catherine von. 136
Boscarati. Felice. 179
Bose. Cornelia Adrienne. 223
Bosse. Abraham. 158-9

Aretino. Pietro, 1 13
Areus, 58
Ariosto. 87. 113
Aristophanes, 35
Aristotle. 32

Botticelli.

287

Arkwright. Sir Richard. 221


Aries lace, 202

268
Boucher, Francois. 190
Boulanger. C B 235
Bourget. Paul. 263

Armour,

Bourrelet. 130. 136

Bottini. Georges.

74, 107-8. 70, 101

Arnauld. Mere Angelique. 174


Art of Knotting a Tie in Sixteen Lessons,

238-9

Bowler

hats. 246. 268.

Brassieres. 39. 52. 260. 281

Artificial silk,

Cecco

Breeches. 16th C,
128-9; 17th C,

d",

16. 125. 126. 127. 113.

151.

162.

166.

151.

C, 184,
C. 241. 252
Brinon. Madame. 195

187,

216.

198:

158-9; 18th

305

19th

87

Aten, 15
Athenais. 64
Augustus. Emperor. 53. 58. 80

Aumont, Madame

d'.

Brocade. 161. 172. 183. 190. 210. 223


Broderie Anglaise, Til
Bronzino. Agnolo, 122
Brummeil. Beau. 242, 254, 310
Bruno. Giordano. 173
Burnous. 241
Busbecq. Ogier Gislain de. 152
Bustles. 251, 252. 252

212

Bacon. Francis. 172


Baker. Josephine. 294
Balenciaga. 308
Balmain. 308
Balzac. H. de. 232, 240

Cadenettes. 198

Balzo. 106
Bandello. M.. 113
Bandinellas, 71

Calabrian hats, 246

Barbazza. Marchese Filippo. 176


Barocci. F.. 168-9
Baroque. 172. 209
Basil

II.

Emperor.

61

Bathing costumes. 260. 270. 305. 289. 312


Batiste. 222
Battiferri. Laura. 122
Battle-dress blouse. 31

Bayadere. 232
Beads. 263
Bear skin, ^x
Beards. Egyptian.
15th

19th
Beatle-,.

309

Braces. 187

Brandt. Isabella. 147

Art el la Mode. L' 271


Art Nouveau, 259-60
Artemis. 29, 37
Arthur. King. 73
Ascoli,

C, 104:
C, 242

19.

16th

22:

Greek.

C.

125-6.

The. 22

Beatrix ol

Calecon, 122
Caligula. 50
Callet. A. F.. 183
Callot sisters. 283
Camelot. 190
Cameos. 254 255
Camiknickers. 282
Camille". 211

36;
138;

Canova. Antonio. 229


Capes, 118. 128, 182. 240
Capet. Hugh. 68
la cabriolet.

248

Caraco, 194
Carbonari. 260
Cardigans. 31
Cardin. Pierre. 313

Beau Brummcll. 242. 2


Beauharn.uv Hortense de, 228

Carl Gustav of Sweden. 176

Beauharnais. Stephanie de. 22K


Bcaujeu, Anne de. 101

Carnegie. Hattie. 303


Carnevale. Fra. 88-9

I8

Carmagnole

21

Number

Crinoline. 232, 234, 238, 248. 251. 252,


"
306, 221, 236-7. 242. 246
la, 230
Cromwell, Oliver, 172

Crosna. 66
Crotali. 50
Cruz. Juana Ines de

174

Cuff-links, 255

Cuirass, 107-8

Cut de Paris. 194, 199, 213


Culottes, 266, 301
Curie. Marie, 260

Cutaway

tailcoat,

242

Cycling, clothes for, 270


Czartyoryski. Princess, 287

Five, 287

Chaperon, 133
Chaplin. Charlie. 294

Dacier.

Chardin.

Dadaism, 294

J. B..

la.

Cubism. 282. 294

Cendal. 72
Cervantes. M. de. 1 13
Cerveten. 44. 45
Cezanne. Paul. //
Chainse, 78
Champaigne. Philippe de, 168, 169
Chanel. Gabnelle (Coco), 267, 283. 287,
288.294. 301, 305.310

Chanel

Cossa, Francesco, 95
Costume jewellery. 286
Cotton. 42, 52. 53
Council of the Ancients. 2
Council of Lyons, 83
Courier des Dames. 224. 230. 232. 246
Courreges. 317
'Court of Love', 72, 73
Cousteau family. 352, 391, 404, 406
Cranach, Lucas, 10
Cravats. 162, 240
Creed. Charles. 308
Crepe. 223, 263
Crequi. Charles, 172
Crete. 29-32
Crinoletle. 252

Croix, Josephine

254. 186

Anne

Lefevre, 206

Charlemagne. 65
Charles V, Emperor. 118
Charles VI of France. 129

Dalmatica, 82

Charles VIII of France, 92. 101, 107, 1 10.


116. 140
Charles IX of France, 120. 128, 128
Charles I of England. 164
Charlotte, Empress of Mexico. 238, 248
Charpentier. Madame. 164
Chartres. Duchess of. 208
Chateauroux. Madame de. 190
Chemise dress. 308
Chemises. 208. 216. 221,222
Chevreuse. Madame de, 153
Chic Parisienne. La. 277
Chiffon, 278
Chignons. 35, 248, 29

Dancourt. 194
Dante. 113. 168
Daughters of Charity'. 174
David. 211
David, J-L., 218-19, 227
Davis, Bette. 304
Dawes. Mary Claire, 260
Debucourt. Philibert Louis, 214-15
Defence of the Conception of the Virgin,

Damask,

Dame

Children's fashions. 17th C, 168, 150.


166, 168-9; 19th C, 255-6, 254, 256;
20th C. 277
Chinoiserie. 209. 263, 294
Chiton. 39. 42. 48. 35. 37, 40, 41
Chlamvs. 42
Chodowiecki. J. K.. 200, 201
Chopin, Frederic, 232
Chopines, 1 18
Christina of Sweden, 176
Cicero, 87
Claudius. Emperor. 48. 53, 43
Clavus. 61
Clement VII. pope, 118
Cleopatra, 15. 18. 50
Cleves. Marie de, 90
Cloche hats, 294, 297
Clogs, 118. 183
Clothilde. wife of King Clovis. 84
Code of Love". 72
Codice Capodilista. 71. 93

Cod-pieces. 16
Coello, Sanchez. 141
Coifs. 91. 110, 117. 136
Coke. William. 246
Colbert. Claudette, 305
Colbert. J. B., 164. 211
Collalto. Conte Collaltino
Cologne water. 202-3. 228
1

di.

113

Columbus. Christopher. 94. 113


Comedie Italienne. 190
Cone-shaped hats. 82. 104
Congress of Vienna. 230. 231
Conques. 36
1

Considerations'. 198
Consolation of Philosophy (Boethius). 87
Constance of Castille. 68
Constantine, Emperor, 64
Constantinople. 61
'Constitution'. 21

Conti. Princess of, 199


Corneille. Pierre, 172

Cortegiano (Castiglione). 142


Cosmetics. 20th C, 288 >J3:

Make-up

92. 164. 166. 184

Trot, 80

110
Degas.

252

E.,

Degli Habiti antichi e moderni (Vecellio).


116. 117. 120. 126

Deir el-Bahri. 15
Delirac. 234
Dent e lie. 140

Department

stores.

256

Derniere Mode. La, 251


Descartes, R., 172, 176
Desses. Jean. 308
Diadems. 58. 61. 65
Diaghilev, Serge. 268

Diane de

Poitiers. 120, 122


Dictionnaire des Precieuses. 153
Dietrich, Marlene, 301
Diocletian. Emperor, 50

Diodorus Siculus, 45
Dior, Christian. 308
Directoire. 211. 216. 220. 231. 256

Diversarum Nalionum Habitus


122. 132-3

Dogskin,

(Bertelli).

78, 159, 187

Dolls, fashion. 156

Dolly

sisters.

282

Dombes. 174
Don Carlos. 268
Don Quixote (Cervantes). 13
Dongen, Kees van. 288-9
D'Orsay, Count A. G.. 254
1

113

Campanella. Tommaso, 173


Campers' cardigans. 31

Capotes a

Carven, 308
Casanova. 186
Casati. Marchesa. 296
Cashin. Bonnie. 303. 316
Cashmere, 223
Castello. 308
Castiglione. Baldassar de. 142
Castiglione. Madame de. 248
Cat fur. 78. 161
Catherine of Aragon. 122
Catherine de" Medici, 113, 118, 120
Catherine of Russia, 179
Cavalieri, Lina. 270, 277
Cavanagh. John. 308
Cavour, C. B., 242
Celentano. Bernardo, 257
Cellini. Benvenuto, 140

Colonna. Lorenzo Onofno. 176


Colonna. Simonetta. 307
Colonna, Vittoria. Marchesa di Pescara.

Candida. 53

Beatrice. 168

Car-suit, 276

Cartek. 190

Berets. 82. 110, 128. 196.211. 246

Albert.

Amon.

Queen of Naples, 228, 228


Caron, Antoine, 138
Carpentier. Mad. 308
Camera. Rosalba. 206, 208

Berain. Jean, 209. 175


Berenice, wife of Ptolemv Euergetes. 35

15

refer to illustrations

Caroline.

Benserade, 169
Benzoin. 290

Aiguilletle,

Amenhotep

in italics

Beauty spots. 149-50, 202, 211. 260


Beaver fur, 161, 240
Bedouins. 16, 17
Beene. Geoffrey, 303
Belgiojoso. Cristina di, 260
Belladonna. 296

A-line, 308

see

also

Doublets. 108. 116. 127. 138, 150, 159,


161. 137. 155
Doucet. Jacques. 254. 263. 283, 292
Drake. Sir Francis. 137
Du Barry. Madame. 199. 202

Dubufe, 248
Duffle-coats. 311. 307

Dufy. Raoul. 267


Dumonstier. Daniel. 172
Dungarees. 302. 313
Durameau. 187
Durer. Albrecht. 104, 106-7
Duse. Eleanora. :
Dustcoats. 276

Eboli. Princess of. 141


Edict of Nantes. 145
Edward VII of England. 270
Eglantine. Fabre d'. 212

Eisenhower jacket. 31
Eleanor of Aquitaine. 71, 84
Eleanor of Aragon. 87
Elisabeth. Queen of Belgium. 278

Elisabelh of Wurttemberg. 194


Elizabeth of Austria, Queen of France,

140
Elizabeth Charlotte of Bavaria, 164
Elizabeth, Empress of Austria. 287, 249,
251
Elizabeth of Prussia. 249
Elizabeth, Queen of England, 116, 137,
148. 172, 144
Eloise. 75
Elsie. Lily, 288
Elzevir family, 130
Empire style. 224-30, 231, 256
Engageonls. 166
'Enlightenment'. 179
Entrave, 267
Enzo. 308
Ephebos. 32, 36
Epicureans. 36
Ermengard of Narbonne. 84
Ermine. 276
Essen. Jacob ben. 98-9
Essex. Robert Devereux, Earl of, 138
Essler. Fanny, 232
Este, Ercole d". 87
Este. Isabella d, 116
Este. Lionel d\ 100
Estense. Baldassare, 103
Etienne family, 130
Etoiles, Madame d'. 190
Eton Crop'. 298
Etruscans. 45-50
Eudes I. Count of Blois, 68
Eugenie. Empress of France. 238. 247.
250. 254,244-5, 248
Euripides. 87
Exekias. 34
Eyelashes, false. 260

Face packs. 58. 102


Fairbanks. Douglas. 272
Fair Isle' sweaters. 305
Falhala premiere' 238
False hair. 164. 260
False stomach', 21 3
'

Fans. 65, 109, 113, 159, 202, 66. 162-3.


210. 211
Farcioni. 307
Farina brothers. 202
Farthingales. 130, 133. 136. 148, 149
Fashion Group of Great Britain. 308
Fath. Jacques. 308. 310. 311
Faulkner. William. 294
Fauves. 267
Fearnle>-VVhittingstall. Mrs. 305
Feather boas. 263, 278

Feather
Feather
Feather
Fee aux

fans, 202

head-dresses, 221

trimmings, 266, 277


Chou.x. La. 272
Fellowes. Hon. Mrs Reginald. 295-6
Felt hats. 268

Femma. 295
Ferdinand

Garconne hair

Gaumont, 272
Gautier. 164
Gazelle du Bon Ton. 1m. 288. 2902. 293
Geinreich, Rudi. 303
Genevieve of Brabant. 73
Genoese velvet. 92. 137
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (Loos), 296
George HI of England, 179

Gerard. F .. 223
Germanicus, 43
Geron, 32

174

Guido, 82

Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden. 176


Gutenberg. Johannes. 129. 130
Gynaeceum. 32

Fraise. 126. 145

Francesca. Piero della. 104


Francis I of France. 125-6, 127
Francis II of France. 120
Frederick I Barbarossa, 74
Frederick II. Emperor. 64
Frederick the Great of Prussia, 179
Frederick. Prince of Urbino. 168-9
Friponne. 153
Frockcoat, 242. 268. 303
Fronde. 179
Froschauer. Christopher. 14(1

Gagelin. 249. 250

Gainsborough. T.. 203. 207


Galanos. 303
Oalerie des Modes. 194
Galileo. 168

Garbo. Greta. 282, 294, 301. 300

Jansenism. 174. 208

'.reek. 42;

Medieval. 65, 83, 66;

C,

50; 15th

C.

102 3; 16lh

159; 18th

C, 203

4,

C,
208,

209; 19th C. 254-5


Joan of Arc, 84. 91. 94
Joan of Toulouse, 84
Joanna of Flanders. 84
II

Machiavelli.

New

Macy's.

13

York. 302
(Princess Metlernichl.

250
Maeterlinck. Maurice, 263
Mattel, Clara, 260

Mah-jongg, 294
Maillol. A.. 264-5

Mainbocher, 303

Journal des Demoiselles, 270


Jugendslil, 259
Julia, d. of Titus, 57
Julius II, pope, 122
Julius Caesar. 18, 80
Juno, 33
Jupc de hesoin. 152
Jitpc de parade el d eclat.
53

Mamtenon. Madame

de. 195. 283

Maison de la pilii, Pans. 174


Makart, 258
Make-up. Egyptian, 26; Greek. 38; 20lh
C, 288-93
Malachite powder. 26
Mallarme. 251
Malmaison. 228

Justinian.

XII of France. 101


XIII of France. 148. 150
of France. 145. 179. 1X2. 2X3.
180 I. 182
XV
of
France. 190. 209. 210. 182
Louis
Louis XVI of France. 256, 183
Lounge suits. 305. 310
Louviers. 221
Louvre. Paris. 256
Lucian. 35
Lucinge. Princess de. 287
Lucius Tarquinius Pnscus. 45. 48
Lucumon. 45
Lulh. J-B.. 172
Lunnere brothers. 271
Luther. Martin, 122. 136

XIV

'Madame Chiffon'

Comnenus. 63

(St Louis). 84

XI of France. 94.97. 101

Emperor. 61

Juvenal, 57

Malpighi. Marcello, 173

H-line, 308

Karnak, 15

Mannequins. 87
Mansfield. Kathennc. 278

Hair-clips. 248

Kashmir shawls, 222

Manta. Castle

Hair dyes, 58
Hair styles. Cretan. 29. 32: Egyptian.
21-4, 14. 15. 19. 20. 22-3: Etruscan.
49. 44; Greek. 33-7. 28. 29. 34. 35. 36;

Kaulbach. 255

Mantilla. 189

Ken

Manuzio. Aldo. 130


Manzoni. Alcssandro. 260

Roman.

C,

Scott Boutique, 312

Kepos, 36
Kersloot, A.. 166

90. 91. 96-7.

140;

Klee. Paul, 294

235-7. 242; 20th

Knickerbockers. 270. 305


Knickers. 118
Kohl. 26. 277. 288. 290

103-4.

103; 16th C, 136. 138.


17th C, 148. 162-4; 18th C,
195-8. 199. 211. 216. 187. 195. 197.
198. 199; 19th C, 221, 242, 246-8. 254.

C,

278, 281, 282, 306

Kom Ombo.

of. 16.

fur. 78, 161

Lace bonnets, caps. 221. 232. 247


Lace collars, 150-1, 153. 167
Lace sunshades, 266
Lacerna. 49
Lachasse. 306, 308
La Fontaine, 172
Lamballe, Marie. Princess

Holland. 110. 148. 151 -2; cloth, 91


Hollar. Wenceslaus. 152, 153
Homer. 33. 58. 206

Hooped

skirts. 140, 231,

191

Hdpilal de la Chariie. Paris. 174


Horsehair. 251
Hortense. Queen of Holland

Marble. Alice. 305


Marcel waving, 281
Margaret of Flanders s4
Margaret of Navarre. IX
Margaret of Provence. 84. 68
Margaret of Scotland. 94. 97
Margaret of York. 10
Margarita of Austria. 156
Marguerite. Queen of Italy, 263
Marguerite de Valois. 130. 133
Maria Carolina of Naples. 210
Maria Dilumnia. 64
Maria Louisa of Parma. 192
Maria de'Medici. Queen of France. 14?
174, 148
Maria Theresa of Hapsburg. 179. 198
'7 204
Maria Theresa of S
Maria Theresa of Spain. 152
1

19

Kovalewsky, S., 260


Knehuber. Josef. 235

Helen. Queen of Italv. 278


Hennin. 90.91. 103. 110
Henrietta Maria. Queen of England. 164
Henrv II of France. 118. 122. 136
Henry III of France. 117. 120. 128, 133
Henrv IV of France. 140. 145
Henrs VIII of England. 118. 122. 127
Henry of Anjou. 72
Henrv the Obstinate. 10
Hera, 27
Hercules. 36
Hermes. 38
Herodotus. 18. 42. 50
Hildegard of Bingen. 84
Hilliard. Nichol is
Himalwn, 42
Hippocrates. 39
Hislorv of Fashion (Racinet). 120. 152.
153, 174, 189
Hitler. Adolf. 298
Hodler. Ferdinand. 271
Holbein. Hans, the Younger. 139

Saluzzo. 82

Marathon, 36

195

Hartnell,

of.

Marat, Jean Paul, 216

Khnumhotep. tomb
Kimonos. 267

58, 51, 56. 57; 15th

Norman, 308
Harvey. William. 168
Hathor. 2b
Hatshepsut. 15
Head-scarves. 307
Hecebolus. 61
Heciorean style. 36

Fragonard. J-H.. 191.202

James. Charles. 302


Janinet. 196

Melchior. 124-5
VII of France. 71

IX of France

Manguin, 308

Harlow, Jean. 303

fur. 78. 161

26

Dames el des Modes. 226,


278. 280, 281, 282. 284-5

Guitry. Sacha, 287

Hare

Fox

Isabes. 226. 223


lsis,

Journal des

Guiche. Madame de. 202


Guimpe. 78

Fire Bird iStravinsky). 268

Frac. 186, 187, 213. 216. 240. 206

Conches. 84

Isabella d'Este. 116

Jolson. Al. 294


Josephine. Empress of France, 222, 223.
224. 228. 218 9. 226

Griselle. 190

Fidele. 152

Forobosco. 164
Foscolo. Ugo. 260

Irene.

John

Gradenigo, Graziano, 78
Grandson. 124
Grassini. 228
Greer. Howard. 303
Gregory V, pope. 68
Gregory X. pope. 83
Gres, 308
G rifle, 308

Fichu. 164. 199.210,216,251

Fontevrault. 7 3

Lork.
Louis
Louis
Louis
Louis
Louis
Louis

J
D 230, 243
Empress. 64. 65
Isabella of Bavaria, 90

Ingres,

140. 17th

Gourielli, Prince. 292

Hammond.

Fomanges. 195

Lorenzetti, Ambrogio. 76
Lorenzo the Magnificent. 122

Roman,

Gonzaga. Vincenzo, 137

Hamamelis, 290

Fontanges. Mademoiselle de. 162

33

Indienne, 208, 211

48

Mantua,

29.42

Incroyables, 216
Indicaleur. 2

Jersey dresses. 283


Jewellers. Byzantine. 61; Cretan. 29. 32.
33. Egyptian. 26. 21. Etruscan. 49 50.

Gonzaga. Eleanora, 148


Gonzaga. Isabella d'Este, 87
Gonzaga. Maria. Princess ol

Guinizelli.

Iliad.

19.

Longhi. Pietro. /77, 186. 193


Loo, L. M. van, 182
LOOS, \nita, 296

Isabella de

Givenchy. 308. 311


Gobert. Pierre. 184
Goldoni. 210
Goldoniana. 187

Fersen. Axel. 199

307

Loincloths. IX

Isabella of Castile. 94

Ghislandi. 185, 188


Gibertina. 65
Gibus, 242
Gilel. 184
Giornale delle Signore liuliane. 252
Giotto. 277
Gish. Dorothy. 272
Gish, Lillian. 272

Ferroniere. ISA

sisters.

Lock's (hatters). 246

Loden coats. 268

Guuthier d'Agoty, 201, 204

Half-gloves. 210
Hals, Franz. 169

Fontana

Livre (Theures de Troves. Le. 110


Livy. 45

Horus. 26
Hotel Dieu, Paris. 113, 174
Hour-glass shape. 231
Hubbard, Elizabeth. 290. 293
Huque. 94

cut, 281

Garibaldi, Giuseppe. 260


Garters, 97, 100. 118. 162. 187
Gattinoni. 307

of Castile. 94
Ferrandina, 190

Five Hundred, 21
Flannel trousers. 31
Florentine velvet. 103
Fogarty. Anne. 303
Foix. Margaret de. 101
Folies Bergere. 270

of,

208

Lambskin. 78. 161


Lame. 250. 283
Lampi. 194
Landolfo Carcano. Marchese. 255
Langtry, Lily, 283
Lanvin, 267. 287. 302. 308. 291
Lattice' breeches. 125

Laurana. Luciano. 97
Laval. Jeanne de. 97

trianna of Austria

Marie Adelaide of Savoy. Duchess of


Burgund
Marie Antoinette. 179. 187. |4s

Mine

de Cleves. 90. 120

Marie Josephine of Savoy, 201


Mine Louise. Empress of France. 224

La

Valliere. Louise. 169


Lavreince, Nicolas. 191
Leather jackets. 31
Leather loincloths. 19
Leczinska. Maria. 191
Lee. William, 126
Leicester. Robert Dudley. Earl of. 138
Lelong. Lucien. 302
Leo X. pope. 122. 124
Leonard (hairdresser). 195. 196

Leonardo da Vinci.
Leopard skin. 19

Mane

de Ventad

Marillac. Louise de.

"4
I

Marinet!

Marten

skins. 78. 161

Maruccclli.

Mary
Mary

Germana. 307
Queen of Scots

Stuart.

Stuart belts. 231


I

udor.

Queen of England.

''
1

M
Masol

13

223.226. 228. 230


Lewis and Allcnby. 249
I.eydcn. Lucas \an. 127
Liberty. Arthur Lasenbv. 263
(tailor),

Linen. 18. 19.42. 76.

Livia,

widow of Dru>i.
widow of Augustus.

H.,
a.

15

Linziolelto. 183

Queen of England. 84
Uucntin. 109
vie di. 102

Mattli

Lionnes 232
Livia,

Mata

Maximilian of Austria. 101


ilian.

Empcr

45

319

Mazann, 153. 156, 179


Mazzini, Giuseppe. 260
Mazzocchio, 106
Medici. Catherine de\ 113. 118, 120
Medici. Maria de\ 145. 174. 148
Mengs. A. R.. 192, 204, 208. 210
Mercure Galanl. Le. 156, 159. 194
Merit, 21
Merlello, 140

Merode, Cleo

288

de. 270.

Merovingian, 91
'Mesmer' hair style, 196
Messalina, 58

Metamorphoses (Ovid), 94
Metastasio. 210
Metternich, Princess, 230, 250
Mezzero, 183
Michelangelo. 125, 172
Milesian Fables, 58

of.

Rebalzo. 106
Rebel. Francois, 208
Reboux, Caroline, 254
Recamier, Madame. 227-8, 290, 227
Redi, Francesco, 173
Redingote, 194. 199, 211, 226, 231, 240,
268, 277, 278
Regnault, 164

Parfait contentment, 189, 192


Parkas, 311
Parr, Catherine, 139
Pascal, Blaise, 174
Pascal, Gilberte, 174
Pascal. Jacqueline. 174, 176
Passe, Crispin de, 144
"Patent coats', 166
Patou. Jean. 302. 308
Patterson, Ronald, 308
Pelerines, 136
Pepin, King of France, 65
Peplum, 42
Pepoli. Marchese Guido, 176

Rejane, 252, 254


Renoir, P. A., 287, 253
Respaille. 206

Restoration, 230-1, 232, 241


Reticules, 220

Rhinegraves, 162
Ricci. Nina, 308

Rice powder. 290


Richard of Bury St Edmunds. 129
Richelieu, Cardinal. 148, 164, 216
Rigaud, Hyacinthe, 173. 182
Rimski-Korsakov, 268
Rinascente, 294
Robe a ianglaise. 194
Robe a la circassienne, 194
Robe a la francaise, 192, 194
Robe de parade. 162
Robert, King of France, 68
Robespierre. M., 211, 213
Rochefoucauld. Cardinal de la, 174

Penn-Salbreux, 200
Perle des

Mouches.

La. Pans, 149

Giacomo. 242

Perollo.

Perukes, 164
Pelasos. 37
Peter the Great, 179
Petit-point. 184
Petit Trianon, Versailles, 199
Petits bonhommes, 192
Petrarch, 103, 113
Petticoat-breeches. 162

Moliere, 152. 153, 169, 172


Molyneux. 302. 308
Monferrato. Bianca del, 140

Montellano. Duchess

Raphael. 118-19

Panther skins, 161


Paquin, 283, 308
Parasol, 211
Pare, Ambroise, 13

Percale, 220, 232

Ming, 294
Minoan, 29, 32, 33
Miss Satin (Mallarme), 251
Mistinguette. 277
Mittens, 232
Modeste. 153
Moitessier. Madame, 243

273

Montespan, Madame de. 169


Montesquieu, Count Robert de, 269

Spencer. 216. 226. 231. 242


Spitze. 140

Sports shoes. 252


Sports clothes, 305. 310
Stael, Madame de, 182
Stampa. Gaspara, 113
Starching, 145, 148, 254

the Younger, 190, 196. 199. 203


Domenico, 257
Moroni, Giambattista, 128-9
Morris. William, 259
Morton. Digby, 308
Mosca. Madame. 308
Motoring clothes. 276, 275
Moulin Rouge, 270
Mozart. W. A., 210

Philippe le Bel. 83
Philippe of Thaon, 71

Muffs, 161, 187, 266, 201


Muscadins, 213. 216
Muslin. 208.210,263
Musset, Alfred de, 232, 240
Mussini. 233

Piguet, 302

Rosala. 68
Rosales degli Ordegni. Isabella. 206
Rossetti, Dante Gabriel, 259
RoufT, Maggy, 287-8, 304
Rouille, Marguerite de. 174
Rousseau, J. J., 198
Rovello, 68. 69
Rubens, P., 146-7, 148, 160
Rubinstein, Helena, 290. 292, 293
Ruches. 221,263

Pilos. 37

Ruffs, 116, 126, 136, 137, 145, 148, 113,

Morelli.

Philobibtion. 129-30

Phrygian bonnets, 38
Piazza Armerina, Sicily, 50, 53, 64
Picasso, Pablo, 282. 294, 268
Pickford. Mary, 272
Picta. 53

Pigafetta, Antonio, 87

de la Rose. 73. 109


45, 50-8, 78, 109

Steinberg. Saul. 299


1

Steinkirk. 164

13

Stendhal. H-M., 232


Slibid, 26
Stiebel. Victor. 308
Stoics. 36
Stola, 52

Strasbourg Almanack, 162-3. 172


Stravinsky, Igor, 268
Straw hats. 199, 256
Strozzi, Alexandra Mancini. 87
'Stuart' collar. 148

128-9. 133, 134-5, 136, 137, 138, 140.


141, 148, 149, 150-1, 152-3, 155, 160

'Pilot coats', 311

Pisan. Christine de, 1 10


Pisanello, 90-1. 96-7

Russell. Peter. 308

'Plaid' cloak, 241

Plastic hoods, 307

Napoleon Bonaparte, 216, 221,


224. 230. 242. 218-19
Napoleon III, 232. 242. 254

222, 223,

Necessaires, 202

Necklaces, 20th

C.

281-2, 287
25

Nefertiti. 15, 18. 19, 24, 276,

Nefretere. 19

308, 309, 308, 309

260

Nitocris. 24

Nobili. Riccardo. 256

Norman, 303

Dame de Thermidor. 220


Novellino (Salernitano), 1 10
Noire

Nylon stockings, 309

Obi, 268
Octavia. wife of Mark Antony. 58
Octavian, Emperor. 18
Oil cloth. 248

Organdy. 232
Orlando, 73

San

191-4,

Overcoats see Coats


Ovid, 57, 58
Oxford bags', 305

Pre-Raphaelites, 258
Printemps, Yvonne, 287
Printemps, Paris, 256

Potter, Claire, 303

Pouf. 196, 199, 251


de,

270

Pourbus, Frans, 140, 148


Praetexta, 53
Prefect. 268

Propertius, 58

Paleotti. Cristina, 176

Prud'hon, Pierre Paul, 226


Pucci, Emilio, 308, 313
Pugha, William, Duke of, 101
Pulcheria, Empress, 61

Paletot. 268

Pull-overs, 286, 313

Palla, 52, 61

Pumice stone, 21, 26


Punch cartoons, 217, 246

Pais, 32

Palmata. 53
Palmyre, 251
Pamelas. 226

Panama

hats,

Pyjamas, lounging, 282


270

Panciatichi, Bartolomeo, 123


Pamer. 182. 189, 210. 211. 199. 200. 201
Pankhurst. Christabel. 271

Pankhurst, Emmeline, 271


Pankhurst. Sylvia. 271
Pantaloons. 232

320

210,

Pontormo, Jacopo, 123


Poppea, 58
Portales. Countess of, 251
Porto-Carrera de Montijo, Maria Francesca, 208
Posidonius of Apamea, 45
Postiches, 254, 260
Postumo, Guido, 116

Poulaine. 84

Vitale,

Tabarro, 183
Tacitus, 176

Tacuinum

Taglioni, 232

Rabbit

fur, 65, 161

Racinet, 120. 152, 153, 174, 188


'Raglan' cloak. 241
Raleigh, Sir Walter. 138

Tanagra

Ravenna, 276

Tang, 294
Tarot cards, 1 10
Tarquinia, 45
Tatez-y, 192
Taylor, Robert. 303
Tebenna, 49
Teddy Boys, 309
Tenca, Carlo, 260
Terborch, Gerard, 150
Terence, 87

Sansculottes. 21

Sand, George, 232-4


Santvoort, 150
Sassenages, Marguerite de, 97
Satin, 161, 164, 184, 187, 223, 240
Row. London, 309
Savonarola, 110
Sbalzo. 203
Scaasi. Arnold, 303
Scaligeri tomb, Verona, 73
Scheling, Andre, 216
Schiaparelli, 298, 301. 306
School of Mars, 21
Schubert, Federico Emilio, 307, 310
Scott Fitzgerald. F., 294
Second Empire, 231, 260

Theodolinda. 65, 66
Theodora. Empress, 61
Theodosia. Empress, 61
Theodosius. Prince, 61

Savile

Theopompus. 45
Thermae,

53. 57
Theseid cut, 36

Thimonnier. Barthelemy. 256


Thoth, 18
Three-cornered hats, 166, 187,
Thutmosis I, 15
Thutmosis II, 15
Thutmosis III. 15

Secrete. 153

Semmelweiss, I. P., 231


Senebtisi, 26
Seneca, 87
Sequins, 263
'Serene Sister of Lamballe', 208
Sergo, Mathilde. 263
Sernesi, R., 252
Servius Tullius, 48
Seurat, Georges, 255

Sforza. Bianca Maria, 118


Sforza, Catherine, 145
Shakespeare, William, 172
Shawls, 16th C, 118, 140; 18th
222. 230, 232,

189,

216

Tibullus, 58
Tie-pins, 255

Tiepolo, G.
202, 212-13
Ties, 184, 186, 189, 270. 238-9
,

Tiger skins, 161


Tights. 116, 118

Jamet du, 97
223
J. F
Titian. 130, 137
Tillay.

Tishbein.

'Toga', Venetian,

18

Togas, 49, 52, 53. 52. 54. 55


Toile de Reims. 87
Toiles. 302
Tolstoy. Leo. 242

Sewing machines, 256

figurines, 35, 277, 38, 40, 41

Tanaquilla. 45

Samaritaine. Paris, 256


Samite, 71

Madame, 220

Tallone, Cesare, 277


'Talma' cloak. 241

Salome, 67

216; 19th

254

Tailleur,

Tallien,

Sevigne, Madame de, 90, 153,~162


Sevres porcelain, 191-2

Quant, Mary, 316

Sanilalis. 75

Taffeta, 72, 92, 164, 202, 223, 251

Salda, Conte della, 238


Salernitano. Masuccio, 110

290. 190

Orleans. Charles. Due d*. 94


Orleans, Louis, Due d", 101
Osprey, 277, 280
Ostrich feathers, 296
Otero, Caroline. 270
Otter skin. 161. 240. 254
Overbury, Sir Thomas. 148

Palalina. 164

Pompa-

Polignac. Madame de, 202


Polonaise. 251
Pomade, 196

Pougy, Diane

Angelo in Formis, Capua, 61


Apollinare Nuovo. Ravenna, 64
Bartholomew, Massacre of, 120
St Bernard, 104
St Catherine of Siena. 84
St Julia, 73
Saint-Just, A. L., 211
Santa Maria Novella. Florence, 75
St Mark's, Venice, 67
St Quentin, 221
St Sophia, Istanbul, 65
St Ursula, 59
St Vincent de Paul, 174
St

Poiret, Paul, 263-8, 277


Poisson, Jeanne Antoinette see
dour, Madame de
Poitiers. 73

de,

271,274-5

267

Pomodoro, 313
Pompadour, Madame

Suffragettes, 260,

Suleiman, Sultan. 118. 152


Sunshades. 202, 266, 211, 270
Surcot, 78
Suspender belts, 281
Swanson, Gloria, 294
Sweaters. 301. 305, 311; see also Pullovers
Switzerland, 124. 140
Synthetic fabrics. 305

St

Pliny. 50, 87
Plotina, wife of Hadrian, 57

Poiret, Martine,

Nicot, Jean, 1 13
Nightingale. Florence, 260

Norell.

Sack dress, 308


Sailor hats, 248

Plautus. 87
Pleiade, 113

Poet, Lidia, 260


Point Lace. 140

Neipperg. Count. 228. 255


Nemours. Jacques de. 116
Neoclassicism, 208

New Woman* movement.

Sable. 78. 161

Plautius, 45

Plus fours'. 305, 311


Plutarch, 87

Negliges, 194. 208. 211

'New Look

Plato, 176

184
1801
Simpson, Adele. 303
Singer sewing machine, 256
Sinuhe, 21
Slacks, 301, 307
Slashed coats, 124-5
Slimming methods, Egyptian, 26
Smallswords, 204
Smith. Betty. 281
Snuffboxes. 204. 206. 213
Silvestre, Louis,

Spats, 254

Romans,

Moreau

50

Silk stockings, 152, 159,

Sommariva. Countess Emilia, 235

Roman

Montijo. Eugenie de, 238

Silius,

Solon. 42

Rococo. 209

Romorantin, 125
Ronsard, Pierre.

'Shocking pink', 301

Sophia, Archduchess of Austria. 235


Sorel, Cecile, 278
Spartan women. 32. 34. 42

Petticoats. 149, 266, 270

de. 120

Shifts. 65, 118

Shorts, 305

Socrates, 38

Pezzotto, 183
Philip II of Spain. 136. 137
Philip of Orleans, 209

Montgomery. Comte Gabriel

Sheath dresses. 267


Sheepskin, 65
Sherard. Michael. 308

C.

1*

236-7

Top

hats, 82, 242. 270, 234. 239. 252.

Toques. 140. 246. 247. 276

257

Toschini, Countess, 228

Urfe, Pnncessed', 186

Toulouse-Lautrec, 267
Tournure. 251
Tractatus de Arte Venandi cum Avibus, 64
Treasure of the City of the Ladies. 10

Urgulania, 45
Uta. Queen, 68, 72
Uzes, Duchess of, 276

Vigee-Lebrun. Elisabeth. 208. 178, 212


Vignon, 251

King/ Arts' 316.317

Vionnet fashion bouse, 302


Vionnet, Madeleine. 283. 292

Valenciennes, 221
Valentina, 303
Valentino, Rudolph, 294

Trigere, Pauline, 303


Tronchin. Dr, 202
Trolleur. 266
Trotti, Antonio, 176
Trotula, Doctor. 78 80
Troubadours, 68 71, 84
Trouser suits, 317
Trunk hose. 138. 113. 155
Tulle, 195, 222, 250, 296

Valentinois,

Van Dyck.

Comlesse

de, 140
17, 120,

Wolf

Voile, 251

Tunics, Byzantine, 61, 64; Egyptian, 19,


21, 16, 17, 19, 25; Etruscan, 49, 45;
Greek, 39, 34, 39; Medieval, 74, 76,
78; Roman, 52, 53; 15th C, 94; 16th
C, 118; 19th C, 220. 226, 251; 20th
C 268. 276. 278
Turbans. 82, 91, 221, 226, 247, 277
.

Tuiulus. 49

C,

184. 186, 187, 208,

240,

Walewska, Marie. 228


Walking sticks. 42. 204. 216, 270
Wanamaker's. Philadelphia, 256
Warfield, Wallis. Duchess of Windsor.
278, 303

250
Umbrellas. 202, 204. 232, 266

187.

'

39, 42, 49, 52. 53, 65,

71, 74, 76

254

Vie Parisienne. La. 258-9


Viero, Teodoro. 120, 198. 199, 203

Ulsters, 268

C.

172; 18th

fur, 161

Wolfe, Elsie de, 293

213, 216, 187, 204, 205; 19th

Vespucci, Amerigo, 113


Vibert, 27/
Vico, 130
Victorine, 232
Victoria, Queen of England, 232, 263,

18

Tutankhamen, 20
"Tutankhamen' line, 281

21-3; Greek, 35;

18,

166,

'Woirs teeth', 231


Woollen material,

Waistcoats. 18lh

Veneziano, Domenico, 97
Ventura, 279
Verdi. Giuseppe. 242, 260
Verdi, Marghenta, 233
Vergniaud, Pierre V., 187
Vernet, 222, 230, 231
Veronese. Paolo. 1 14-15
Verri, A., 192

164,

Voysey, Annesley, 272


Vramant, France. 303

204, 223, 240

Veneziani, Jole, 308

C,

Voltaire, 179. 192

Velvet. 92, 133, 137. 164, 166, 184, 190,

Tullia. 48

126

Velasquez, D. R. de, 148, 156


Velde, Henry van de, 259

Tulle bonnets, 221

'Turkish' cape,

Nuova (Dantel. 168

Vitrea. 53

A.. 148, 161, 164, 168. 169

Vecellio. Cesare, 116

17th

Windsor, Duchess of. 278, 303


Winterhalter, Franz, 241, 244 5. 250
Wiscia, 76

Virgil, 45, 58

Vita

Wigs, Egyptian,

198,211, 180-1; 19th C, 260


Wilde, Oscar, 263, 270
Wilder, Thornton, 294
William of Aquilaine, 71
William of Orange, 136

164
charmani. 198

Villeroi le

Tricolour, 21
Tricoleuses, 21

Madame.

Villeneuve,

World War
World War

277, 290, 310

I,

305, 311

II,

Worth, Charles Frederic, 249-51, 308,


247
Wragge, B. H., 303

Xenophon,

78, 87

Zandomeneghi, Fedengo, 263

Watt, James. 221


Watteau, Antoine, 182. 208, 254, 184,
187
'Watteau picas'. 1X2, 189
Wellington, Duchess of, 230
Wells. Jackson and Morton, 232
Weyden, Roger van der. 108

Whalebone. 182. 186. 195


'Wide-awake' hat, 242

Zendado,

8,

83

Zip-fasteners, 281
Zipone. 118, //

Zoe\ Empress, 64-5


Zona, 52
Zoppi, Faustina Maratti, 176
Zornea, 18
Zoser, King, 22
Zuckerman, Ben, 303
1

PICTURE ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
ALINARI:

6, 9,

5,

38 (upper

left),

44,

45, 49, 56, (upper), 57 (upper), 69, 75


(left),
left).

82-3. 86, 108-9, 112. 148 (lower


167 (upper left). 183 (left). 210

ANDERSON:

64

(lower

left),

128-9

(lower), 179

ARBORIO MELLA:

(lower).

15

20.

22-3 (upper). 29. 34 (upper right). 36


(centre), (right), 60 (left). 64 (right). 83
(lower right), 90 (left), 104 (lower
124-5 (upper), 124, 125, 141,
left).
144, 148 (upper left). 202 (upper right).
204(lower left), 205 (right). 222 (lower)
233, 244 (lower left), 275

left, lower left and


196 (upper left), 203
(upper right, centre,
lower left), 209, 212-13, 222 (upper),
225 (upper right), 249, 250-1. 251
(right), 251 (left), 255 (upper left), 263
264-5, 266 (upper right),
(right),
267 (upper right), 270 (lower right),
271 (lower left), 272 (upper left, lower
right). 273, 274 (upper and lower).
275. 277, 278 (left), 282 (lower left),
283, 288 (lower left), 289, 299, 300, 301
(upper right, lower right). 304, 305
(upper and lower right), 306 (lower
right and left), 308, 309, 310 (upper
left), 311, 314

(upper

left,

right),

194

(centre),

centre

(left),

BULLOZ:

14, 91, 158,

159, 170-1, 175,

MULAS:
CARPINACCI:

19 (left).

ARSPHOTO

22 (upper and lower), 28, 32 (upper

169 (right,

left, lower right). 36 (upper). 37, 38


(centre right), 48 (lower left and right).

right)

52,

56

53,

(left,

centre

left,

101. 104
106.

right,

(upper

left,

lower
lower

left),

right).

172 (upper

and

149. 152, 153. 168 (right).


left).

lower),

68

THE OBSERVER:

ELECTA:

76 (right), 103 (lower right).


13! (upper), 154, 184 (upper left)

174 (lower
left),

left).

175

185, 186

187 (upper, centre,


(lower), 190 deft). I'M

316 (upper

right),

306 (upper

317 (below

E.P.S.: 201 (right), 204 (upper

(upper left and


lower left)

right),

left), 205
206 (upper and

PUCCI:313

QUEEN:
FILIPPI: 202 (upper

(photo Helmut Newton): 317

(left)
left)

SCALA:
203 (upper left), 214-15.
218-19, 223 (right), 226 (left), 245
72

(upper
(left),

(left)

305 (lower

46-7, 51, 67, 71 (upper), lb


9, 103 (upper right). 122
123, 127, 138 (upper
146-7. 160. 161, 165. I6X <>. IM
188 (left). 188-9. 200 (left). 223
252 (lower right). 253. 256 (left).
10,

(left), 93,

left).

HORST:
303

(photo John Cowan)

left)

PAF INTERNATIONAL:

(left),

ASSOCIATED PRESS:

left)

right)

GOMBRICH:

98

left).

257, 269

left)

(lower

left)

1NTERSTAMPA SCOOP:

310 (lower

SILLS &

CO INC

Mf. iright)

right)

ATTUALFOTO:

239, 250 (left)

BEVILACQUA:

21

MARZARI:
(upper and lower
right), 24 (lower), 27, 33, 85, 88, 92
(lower). Ill, 130 (lower). 131 (upper
left

and

right). 161, 164 (centre)

KEN SCOTT:
54

MERCURIO:
lower
74,

13,

left), 59.

77.

79,

5,

164

(upper),

48 (upper

left

BIASI: 19

(right)

(upper

left),

312

193

and

VAGHI:

75

VASARI:

229

(upper

left),

234

(right)

62, 63. 64 (upper right).

81. 87 (right).

92 (upper

left).
134-5. 138 (lower right). 164
(lower), 177. 178, 184 (lower left), 268

right),

188

right). 105.

11819, 121. 125


136 (upper and lower left

(lower), 178, 184 (lower


(left

right), 100.

108-9,

107.

(upper

and

and

left

upper and lower left),


upper right), 248 (lower
1

right,

centre right). 61, 64, 65, 66 (upper and


lower left, lower), 68 (lower left), 70,
72 (lower), 73, 77. 78, 80, 95, 96, 97

(upper

310 (lower
313

57 (lower)

GIRAUDON:
ARCHIVIO MONDADORI:

MATCH:

241 (lower right)

208

268 (lower

left)

VINGT ANS:

316 (below

(above right)

32]

continued from front flap

Everything

Cretan

is

here

the

women, Roman

flounced skirt of

togas, military uni-

forms of Crusader times, the extraordinary


hennin of the Middle Ages, the sumptuous
velvets and brocades of the Renaissance, the

formal elegance of the eighteenth century,


the crinolines of the nineteenth and the casualness
is

of the twentieth,

the scope limited to

styles
is

all

find their place.

women's

Nor

fashions; the

of men are faithfully depicted. The book

completely up to date, with

a special section

on the kooky and boutique clothes of today


and the influence of Mary Quant, Bonnie
Cashin and Courreges.

^ASHION
FROM
ANCIENT
EGYPT
TO THE
PRESENT

DAY
Hundreds

of

colour pictures and


.

tell

a lively text

the changing

story of fashion

through the

ages.

visually exciting

and fascinating book

who

for all

are

interested in clothes

and

their effect

on

history.

Edited by James Laver,

with a Foreword

by Count

Eniilio Pucci

and an Introduction

by Janey

Ironside,

Professor of

Fashion Design,

Royal College of Art,

London.

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