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Silver and ivory handles were usual among ladies of the middle class of society ; but in the higher ranks they were frequently decorated with gems, and the Queen had several new-year's gifts of fans, the handles of which were studded with diamonds and other jewels. * Shakspeare has
allusions to fans of feathers t'; and even hints, in his Henry the Eighth, that the coxcombs of his day were not ashamed to adopt their use. I
Perfumed bracelets, necklaces, and gloves, were favourite articles. “ Gloves as sweet as damask roses," form part of the stock of Autolycus, and Mopsa tells the clown, that he promised her “ a pair of sweet gloves." Ş The Queen in this, as in most other luxuries of dress, set the fashion; for Howes informs us, that in the fifteenth year of her reign, Edward Vere, Earl of Oxford, presented her with a pair of perfumed gloves trimmed with four tufts of rose-coloured silk, in which she took such pleasure that she was always painted with those gloves on her hands, and that their scent was so exquisite that it was ever after called the Earl of Oxford's perfume. ||
To these notices it may be added, that a small looking-glass pendent from the girdle I, a pocket-handkerchief richly wrought with gold and silver, and a love-lock hanging wantonly over the shoulder, were customarily exhibited by the fashionable female.
Burton, writing at the close of the Shakspearean era, has given us a brief but exact enumeration of the feminine allurements of his day; a passage which, whilst it adds a few new particulars, will
“ In a list of jewels given to the Queen at New-years tide, 1589, is. A fanne of fethers, white and redd, the handle of golde, inamaled with a halfe moone of mother of perles, within that a halfe moone garnished with sparks of dyamonds, and a few seede perles on the one side, having her Majestie's picture within it; and on the back-side a device with a crowe over it. Geven by Sir Frauncis Drake.” – Nichols's Progresses, vol. ii. p. 54. note.
+ Reed's Shakspeare, vol. v. p. 80.; vol. xi. p. 261. &c. &c. # Ibid. vol. xv. p. 46.
Act i. sc. 3. Ibid. vol. ix. p. 349. 352. Winter's Tale, act iv. sc. 3. || Stowe's Annals, by Howes, edit. 1614. p. 868.
Reed's Shakspeare, vol. vii. p. 72. note.
fashionable petticoat was the Scottish fardingal
already taffety, satin, or silk, and of enormous bulk, s bethan lady was dressed in one of these,
3 with artificial usually the case, stuffed about the shoulde . i exquisite skill, style of the day, her appearance was t:
estimable riches in frequently thrown a kirtle, mantle, o
vi silver, use coronets formed of silk or velvet, and richl
with pendants, braceSilk-stockings, which were
spangles, embroideries, Mrs. Montagu, her silk-wom;
11hy do they make such this material in that year,
ers, fans, masks, furs, laces, ladies, and formed one
Huskis, velvets, tinsels, cloth of Shoes with very!
op with corks, straitening with species of stilt
dar-net catcheth larks, to make valent mode
And when they are disappointed, most ridient
Join me they wipe away like sweat: weep with dimension
was sich wilt wei or as children, weep and cry they can Оeen of
for sale in piey is to be taken of a woman weeping
While with side extract from Harrison, at the commencement
with All Weat portion of it is employed in satirising Hit med henne med ally of the male-dress of his times, and the think that was found the particulars will serve but to strengthen the pro
i w bin alleviive and to prove, what will scarcely be credited, hat she haddiyy and frivolity of personal ornament, the men far
** the when sex, Tak hans la cheup de remson to conclude that this taste for expensive twind bevolen declaration, was originally derived from the reign of
Allohet me Malancholy, folio, 8th edit. p. 293, 294. 307. — In Vaughan's “Golden Polo" lahat shows the lition of which appeared in 1600, may be found some curious incest autoide of apparell" with regard to both sexes; he tells us that the 10. let the idea of the world " imitated not hermaphrodites
, in wearing of men's they wou no chainen of gold, &c.
they went not clothed in velvet gownes, Hinihame jietlowen. They smelt not unto pomander, civet, muske, and such lyke
Elizabeth, yet was it even still more encouraged by James; for though he set no example of profusion of this kind in his own person, Sir Arthur Wheldon declaring that he was “ in his apparrell so constant, as by his good will he would never change his cloathes till very ragges; his fashion never: insomuch, as one bringing to him a hat of a Spanish block, he cast it from him, swearing he neither loved them nor their fashions. Another time, bringing him roses on his shoes, asked, if they would make him a ruffe-footeddove? one yard of sixpenny ribband served that turne * ;" yet was he passionately attached to dress in the persons of his courtiers ; “ he doth admire good fashion in cloaths ;” says Lord Howard, writing to Sir John Harington in 1611; “ I would wish you to be well trimmed; get a new jerkin well bordered, and not too short; the King saith, he liketh a flowing garment ; be sure it be not all of one sort, but diversly coloured, the collar falling 'somewhat down, and your
ruff well stiffend and bushy. We have lately had many gallants who failed in their suits, for want of due observance of these matters. The King is nicely heedfull of such points, and dwelleth on good looks and handsome accoutrements. Eighteen servants were lately discharged, and many more will be discarded, who are not to his liking in these matters. — Robert Carr is now most likely to win the Prince's affection, and dothe it wonderously in a little time. The Prince leaneth on his arm, pinches his cheek, smoothes his ruffled garment, and, when he looketh at Carr, directeth discourse to divers others. This young man dothe much study all art and device; he hath changed his tailors and tiremen many times, and all to please the Prince, who laugheth at the long grown fashion of our young courtiers, and wisheth for change for every day.” †
King James's love of finery seems to have been imbibed, not only by his courtiers, but by all his youthful subjects; for from the crown
* The Court and Character of King James. Written and taken by Sir A. W. being an eye, and ear witnesse. 12mo. 1650. p. 180, 181.
+ Nugæ Antiquæ, vol. i. pp. 391, 392.
of his head to the sole of his foot, nothing can exceed the fantastic attire by which the beau of this period was distinguished. His hair was worn long and flowing, “ whose length,” says Decker, “ before the rigorous edge of any puritanical pair of scissors should shorten the breadth of a finger, let the three housewifely spinsters of destiny rather curtail the thread of thy life; --- let it play openly with the lascivious wind, even on the top of your
shoulders.” * His hat was made of silk, velvet, taffeta, or beaver, the last being the most expensive; the crown was high, and narrow toward the top, “ like the speare or shaft of a steeple,” observes Stubbes, “ standing a quarter of a yard above their heads ;” the edges, and sometimes the whole hat, were embroidered with gold and silver, to which a costly hat-band sparkling with gems, and a lofty plume of feathers, were generally added. It appears, from a passage in the Taming of the Shrew, that to these high hats the name of copatain was given ; for Vincentio, surprised at Tranio being dressed as a gentleman, exclaims, “O fine villain ! A silken doublet! a velvet hose! a scarlet cloak! and a copatain hat! ť" a word which Mr. Steevens considers as synonymous with a high copt hat.
with a high copt hat. It was usual with gallants to wear gloves in their hats, as a memorial of their ladies favour. I
Of the beard and its numerous forms, we have already seen a curious detail by Harrison, to which we may subjoin, that it was customary to dye it of various colours g, and to mould it into various forms, according to the profession, age, or fancy of the wearer. Red was one of the most fashionable tints || ; a beard of “ formal cut” distinguished the justice and the judge; a rough bushy beard marked
* Decker's Gull's Hornbook, reprint of 1812, pp. 83. 87. + Reed's Shakspeare, vol. ix. p. 175. # Ibid. vol. xvii. p. 467.-Caps were usually worn by the lower class, see vol. vi. p. 89. Ø Ibid. vol. vi. p. 357.
Il Bottom, in Midsummer Night's Dream, mentions also a straw-coloured, an orangetawny, a purple-in-grain, and a perfect yellow, beard, act i. sc. 2.
9 See Jaques's description of the Seven Ages in As You Like It, act ii. sc. 7.
the clown, and a spade-beard, or a stiletto, or dagger-shaped beard, graced the soldier. “ It is observable,” remarks Mr. Malone, “ that our author's patron, Henry Earl of Southampton, who spent much of his time in camps, is drawn with the latter of these beards; and his unfortunate friend, Lord Essex, is constantly represented with the former.” *
Of the effeminate fashions of this age, perhaps the most effeminate was the custom of wearing jewels and roses in the ears, or about the neck, and of cherishing a long lock of hair under the left ear, called a love-lock. The first and least offensive of these decorations, the use of jewels and rings in the ear, was general through the upper and middle ranks, nor was it very uncommon to see gems worn appended to a riband round the neck. † Roses were almost always an appendage
of the love-lock, but these were, for the most part, formed of riband, yet we are told by Burton, in his Anatomy of Melancholy, “ that it was once the fashion to stick real flowers in the ear.” The love-lock, with its termination in a silken rose, had become so notorious, that Prynne at length wrote an express treatise against it, which he entitled, The Unloveliness of Love-locks, and long womanish Hair, 1628. I
The ruff never reached the extravagant dimensions of that in the other sex, yet it gradually acquired such magnitude as to offend the eye of Elizabeth, who, in one of her sumptuary laws, ordered it, when reaching beyond “ a nayle of a yeard in depth,” to be clipped. S
* Reed's Shakspeare, vol. xii. p. 399.
+ Jervis Markham has an allusion to this custom in his Treatise entitled Honour in Perfection, 4to., p. 18.
| Frequent references to these fashions may be found in our author; vide Reed's Shakspeare, vol. vi. p. 162; vol. ix. p. 242, and vol. x. p. 355. Jonson and Fletcher also abound with them; and see that curious exposition of fashionable follies, Decker's Gull's Hornbook, Reprint, p. 86. 137, &c.
Vide Stowe's Annals, p. 869.— The divisions, or pieces of the brim of the collar or ruffe, were, according to Cotgrave's Dictionary, 1611, termed piccadillies. And the author of London and its Environs described, tells us, that in Piccadilly “ there were formerly no houses, and only one shop for Spanish ruffs, which was called the Piccadilly or ruff shop.” Vide vol. v.