elegance of history blog: History geek, avid reader and art lover. Here you will find random bits of history, book reviews and musings on art, literature, manners, life, music and anything else that interests me.
Originally published in 1817, Le Bon Genre is a series of prints depicting the lives and rise of the Parisian middle-class, giving us an invaluable insight into their customs, fashions and pastimes, in Post-Revolutionary France. And of course, given the rivalry that has always existed between France and England, there are also plates ridiculing the
Music “is certainly a very great Accomplishment to the LADIES; it refines the Taste, polishes the Mind; and is an Entertainment, without other Views, that preserves them from the Rust of Idleness, that most pernicious Enemy to Virtue.” John Essex, 1722. Young ladies, in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, were expected to be musically
George Cruikshank (1792-1878), was an English caricaturist and book illustrator. Dubbed the “modern Hogarth”, he became famous for his social caricatures of English life. Among his most renowned works are the “Monstrosities”, a series of prints, which were published annually from 1816 to 1828, ridiculing the fashions of his time. Here are a few of
The Enraged Musician and The Distressed Poet are two prints by English painter, satirist and cartoonist William Hogarth. The Enraged Musician is actually the older of the two. It was completed in 1740 and the following year, its companion piece, The Distressed Poet was finished too. The two prints were issued together that year, in
Self-portrait Marie Bashkirtseff was born on 24 November 1858 in Gavrontsi, Ukraina (then Russia) into a noble and wealthy family. When she was little, her mother left her husband and went to live with her parents near Cherniakhivka with her two children. Later, she decided to travel across Europe and brought her daughter with her.
Diane De Poitiers by Master of the Fontainebleau School, c. 1590 Lady At Her Toilet by Gerard Terborch, c 1660 Woman At Her Toilet by Francois Boucher La Toilette by Francois Boucher, 1742 The Toilette Of Venus by Francois Boucher, 1751 Marquise de Pompadour at the Toilet-Table by Francois Boucher, 1758 Femme à sa Toilette
Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire, was the subject of many satirical prints that ridiculed not only her fashion sense but also her involvement in politics. In a time when women were supposed to stay at home taking care of their husbands and children, a woman who overstepped these boundaries was seen as threatening and out of
ArtDaily reports that a new painting of Queen Henrietta Maria, Charles I’s wife, has been discovered and can now be seen, until March 2013, at Banqueting House, London. To quote: Queen Henrietta Maria (1609 -69), as St Catherine is believed to be Sir Anthony Van Dyck’s final portrait of the Queen, lost for centuries and
Hebe, the daughter of Zeus and his fiery wife Hera, was the Greek goddess of youth and cupbearer to the gods. During the eighteenth century, till well into the nineteenth century, it was popular for young women (and a few not so young ones, like the middle aged Duchesse de Chaulnes), to have their portraits
From the late 18th century to early 19th century, one of the most popular architecture styles was The Gothic Revival, which takes its name from the medieval Gothic architecture it imitated. Many palaces and churches were decorated with typical elements of the Gothic style, such as turrets, pointed-arched windows and crenellated parapets, but the materials