Head-dresses of the ladies of the fifteenth century
L- Initial Letter
ELEGANCE and gracefulness, which had seldom exhibited themselves in the horned and peaked head-dresses of the ladies of the fifteenth century, began again to show themselves in the various headdresses of the beginning of the sixteenth. This was more especially visible in France, which country, then as now, took the lead in the fashions of dress.
QUIETNESS and peace were not among the most prominent characteristics of those ages, in which, unfettered by the sage power of judicious and efficient laws, people were taught to seek justice rather by their own strength, than by the intermediation of others. At that period, the songs which sounded most musical to the ears of the iron-cased barons were the romances that told of hard blows and doughty adventures, and the pictures most beautiful to their eyes were such as those which we here give in ouer plate.
DRESSES of ceremony for solemn occasions, particularly with persons in exalted stations, suffer fewer changes in the course of time, than those in common use. Our plate represents a king- of the latter end of the twelfth century, dressed in his robes of state; but we may probably take it as a good example of the regal costume during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries.
OSTUME, in the west of Europe, during the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, was not strikingly characteristic of difference of countries; its changes were frequent, and often remarkable, but the intercourse between England and France, and in some measure with the neighbouring states, was so constant, that these changes were nearly simultaneous in them all. When, however, we pass to the south, and enter the warm clime and free states of Italy, we find the dresses of all classes have an entirely different character.
The Lady of the English on her visit to Winchester on 3rd March 1141. Matilda was given a formal welcome to Winchester and handed the keys to the treasury. Empress Matilda (also Empress Maude 1102 – 1167) was the first female regent of the kingdom of England, but was not crowned.
The Saxon Head-gear.— Banded Phrygian cap. Cloak.— Of blue cloth embroidered. Tunica.— Green cloth embroidered. Stockings.— Red cloth cross-gartered yellow. (Photographed direct from examples used in the Author’s lecture upon Mediaeval Costumes and Head-dresses.
OUR plate represents a part of the group which occupies the left-hand compartment of the tapestry of Coventry, already described. It is one of the many illustrations of our great dramatic bard which we are enabled to give from contemporary pictures. The nobleman distinguished by his flowing beard, is said to be the “good duke Humphrey;” whilst in the person kneeling behind the king, we readily recognise his uncle and rival, the Cardinal Beaufort. The tapestry must therefore, have been made before 1447, the date of Duke Humphrey’s death (1390-1447). This group has a peculiar interest for the reader of Shakespeare, since it exhibits together several of the personages who figure most prominently in the Second Part of King Henry VI. Gloucester presents much of that character which is so vividly painted by the bard: he is the man loved by the people, and respected by the good among the nobles: Continue reading →
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