Galerie des Modes, 33e Cahier, 1ere Figure

Taffeta lévite, fitted and trimmed with gauze around it; fashionable belt.  The woman is coiffed with a Spa hat.  The dancing master in an informal suit in the fashionable color, and coiffed en herisson. (1780)

The times are no more when one was obliged to specify on ball invitations: ladies without hoops.  Dancers present themselves in short petticoats and fitted gowns.  Such is the turn-out of this amiable student.  Over her fashionable lévite, simply ornamented with a trim of gauze, she passed a spotted ribbon ending with tassels and fringe in the guise of a belt.  Her arms raise the corners of a light gauze apron.  Collar, equally of gauze, knotted in a bow whose ends, after a charming route, are lost under the parfait contentement.  Coiffure in a racine droite, with three curls on each side, of which one is fashionable and falling.  Spa hat, pulled up as a tricorn and surmounted with three plumes which fall softly over the coiffure.  Ribbon bows on the low-heeled shoes.

The young dancing master reveals all the grace of his presence through a simple but elegant suit, whose whole severity is relieved by the manchettes and the discreet lace jabot.  He has untied the ribbon of his cumbersome sword and has unceremoniously propped it against the chair which holds his little hat.  This imitator of Marcel in the art of teaching the minuet, the gavotte, and the passepied seems to speak like him to his docile and graceful student: one jumps abroad, but one only dances in Paris.


  1. Thank you for your work on this blog. SUCH a help when trying to describe french terms!

    1. Thank you! I hope at some point to be able to figure out the exact meanings of the coiffure terms as well (racine droite, phisionomie, etc.).


Post a Comment