Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Galerie des Modes, 21e Cahier, 4e Figure

Young Lady coiffed with an English hat called a chapeau à la Turque, trimmed with flowers and gauze; she is dressed in a Polonaise of gauze striped with silver on a ground of pink taffeta, as is the petticoat. (1779)


POLONAISE WITH TWO MODES, thus called, because in detaching the cords that hold it up in the back, it hangs to the ground and procures the double pleasure of the short Gown and the trained Gown.  Sleeves with sabot cuffs, decorated with a ribbon bow; little désespoir,* serving as the first necklace; second pearl necklace, accompanying the around-the-throat and holding in two libertins,** also of pearls, frolicking on the body of this Beauty.

* "despair", evidently a term for a bow tied around the neck 
** Literally "libertines", probably a sort of metaphorical term as a libertine is literally "free" (Lat. liber, free) and the libertin here is a strand of pearls attached to the front of the gown at one end and free on the other



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