Citizens of New Amsterdam during the 17th century

Historic, dress, America, New Amsterdam, Dutch,
Historic dress in America 1640-1686.


Historic dress in America.


Figure 101. — A Dutch lady of New Amsterdam, wife of a patroon, about 1640. Her gown is of crimson silk with a pointed bodice, low neck and full slashed sleeves showing white under sleeves beneath. The ruff and cuffs are of lace starched and wired. A fold of soft lawn edged with lace finishes the bodice in front, held in place by a rosette of ribbon or a jewelled brooch.

An over-garment, the predecessor of the samare, of a woolen fabric, fitting in at the back and confined by a ribbon at the waist, opens down the front. It has full open sleeves tied with ribbons at the elbow. The hair is worn in a knot at the back and in short wavy locks in front with a fringe of short curls across the forehead.

Figure 102. — A patroon, about 1640. The baggy breeches and slashed doublet are of cloth or velvet. Woolen hose with a scarf of silk below the points which fasten them to the breeches. The falling ruff (collars were also worn at this time) is of white Holland laid in fine knife-plaits. The hat with a soft flapping brim is of felt trimmed with plumes of two colours. Leather shoes with wooden heels are tied at the instep with large bows of ribbon.

Figure 103. — A Dutch lady, about 1660, in a furred samare or jacket of velvet over a gown of amber satin. The arrangement of hair is copied from a portrait of the period; the ends of the side locks are turned under and tied with a ribbon, the rest is taken back and fastened in a coil in which narrow ribbon is twisted.

Figure 104. — An English gentleman at the end of Charles II’s reign and the first half of James II’s. His long coat is of flowered silk, cuffs of rich brocade. The breeches are full and hang over the garters or points which fasten the silk stockings. The shoes are cut rather high and are fastened with a strap of leather through a buckle on the instep. The hat is cocked a little to one side of the front in the fashion called the “Monmouth cock”.

The periwig is very long and full. An embroidered baldric is worn with the sword and a walking-stick ornamented with a large bow of ribbon is carried in the right hand. The neck-cloth tied in a bow under the chin is the new fashion of this date.

Historic dress in America, 1607-1800: with an introductory chapter on dress in the Spanish and French settlements in Florida and Louisiana by Elisabeth McClellan (1851-1920). Philadelphia: George W. Jacobs & Company, 1904.

illustration, vignette, monkey, lion


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