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Walking and carriage costume, December 1839

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Walking and carriage costume, December 1839

published by Dobbs & Co, published in The Court Magazine and Monthly Critic and Lady's Magazine and Museum
hand-coloured etching, line and stipple engraving, published December 1839
9 3/8 in. x 6 1/8 in. (238 mm x 154 mm) paper size
acquired unknown source, 1930
Reference Collection
NPG D47769

Artistsback to top

This portraitback to top

Described in The Court Magazine:
Hat of gros bleu satin. The front is very small, très évasée, and sits quite round to the face, nearly meeting under the chin, and the corners rounded off. A rich bunch of white feathers, tipped with blue, droops at the left side, and small half wreaths of roses are underneath the front. The dress is of pink poux de soie. Manteau of brown satin, wadded, and lined throughout with gros bleu silk. This cloak is cut like a loose wrapping gown, taken in at the waist to a ceinture (band), and has loose sleeves cut on the straight way of the material. The cape is cut out of a very large half square, rounded at the back, and the ends falling very low in front; it is caught up on the shoulders with long straps, and at the back is a capuchon or hood, finished at the lower corner by a silk tassel. Les paremens (facings) are of blue satin of the exact shade of the lining. Collar of guipure, brooch, hair in bands, the ends braided and turned up; black shoes; pale yellow gloves.
The Second Figure gives the back of the manteau; it is made of merinos (pearl grey), with very light green lining. Pink satin hat.

Events of 1839back to top

Current affairs

The Bedchamber crisis strains relations between the government and the monarchy, after Queen Victoria refuses to dismiss her Whig-appointed ladies of the bedchamber at the request of the new, Conservative Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel. Peel resigns and Melbourne returns as Prime Minister.
The Grand National is first held at the Aintree race course, won by the horse Lottery, and the first Henley Royal Regatta, the rowing event, is held on the Thames.

Art and science

The French and British scientists Louis Daguerre and William Henry Fox Talbot separately publicise their experiments with the new form of photography.
The prolific journalist Harriet Martineau publishes her three decker novel Deerbrook, the story of middle class country life.

International

The first Opium War with China is sparked after the British government refuses to try six British soldiers accused of killing a Chinese man protecting a temple from looters. Relations were strained as Britain had promoted the drug opium in China to boost trade. Winning the war, Britain secured vital trading rights.
African captives aboard the Spanish ship La Amistad revolt, resulting in a highly publicised court case.

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