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Toilette d'interieur and carriage costume, July 1841

© National Portrait Gallery, London

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Toilette d'interieur and carriage costume, July 1841

published by Dobbs & Co, published in The Court Magazine and Monthly Critic and Lady's Magazine and Museum, first published in Le Follet, Courrier des Salons, Journal des Modes
hand-coloured etching, line and stipple engraving, published July 1841
8 in. x 5 3/4 in. (203 mm x 146 mm) paper size
acquired unknown source, 1930
Reference Collection
NPG D47877

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This portraitback to top

The plate was originally published in Paris in 'Le Follet' on June 28. Described in the Court Magazine:
Toilette d'Interieur. - Dress of India muslin. Corsage tight to the bust, and only half high, opening in front en coeur. Long sleeves, full at top, and smaller as they go down towards the waist, where they are finished by a lace ruffle. The skirt open in front, has a broad flat hem all round, outside which is a narrow Valenciennes. Embroidered pelerine low in the neck, and sloped to match the dress. It has a second fall in the style of a flat collar mitred all round, and edged as round the neck, with narrow lace; outside, is a deeper fall of the same put on with a slight degree of fulness, over the shoulder. The pelerine is fastened down the front with five rosettes of pink ribbon. It will be perceived that the petticoat worn under the open dress is ornamented with two flounces of lace, and two rows of insertion, placed alternately.
Lace Cap - The form of this cap is at once novel and elegant. (See plate.) It is cut out of a half square, or rather half handkerchief piece, is perfectly plain in front, and made to sit by two or three plaits at back. The border, as may be seen, is formed of the cap itself, turned up in front, and edged with lace. The bavolet is deep, and advances as far as the front of the cap at each side. A rosette of lace with a centre of pink ribbon, is placed at each ear, and a puffing of the same ribbon is carried across the back of the cap. A smaller rosette is likewise placed at each side, more towards the front, and nearly at the edge of the bavolet. (See plate.) Hair in bands, black kid shoes.
Standing Figure. Carriage costume - Dress of striped silk, drab ground, with narrow puce coloured stripes. The corsage is tight and open to the waist in front. It has a revers turned over, and trimmed all round with a chicorée trimming of the material of the dress, which is also carried down each side of the skirt en tablier. The revers is rounded at back, and sloped off towards the centre of the waist in front, where the two ruches very nearly meet. The sleeves are long and tight to the arm. A worked chemisette appears at the opening of the corsage in front. Capotte of white lace. This capotte is of a very simple form; the front and crown have the appearance of being cast all in one. (See plate.) It is very long at the sides of the face. A large bunch of full blown roses is placed at the left side. Cambric cuffs, blue shawl fringed with silk, white kid gloves, black varnished shoes.

Events of 1841back to top

Current affairs

Sir Robert Peel's second term as Prime Minister. Peel replaces the Whig Prime Minister Lord Melbourne after a Conservative general election victory. The English comic periodical Punch is first published, under the auspices of engraver Ebenezer Landells and writer Henry Mayhew, and quickly establishes itself as a radical commentary on the arts, politics and current affairs, notable for its heavily satirised cartoons.

Art and science

Thomas Carlyle publishes his set of lectures On Heroes and Hero Worship, in which he attempts to connect past heroic figures to significant figures form the present.
William Henry Fox Talbot invents the calotype process, in which photographs were developed from negatives. This allowed for multiple copies of images to be made, and was the basis of modern, pre-digital, photographic processing.


Signing of the Straits Convention, an international agreement between Britain, France, Prussia, Austria, Russia and Turkey, denying access to non-Ottoman warships through the seas connecting the Mediterranean and the Black Seas, a major concession by Russia. Whilst signalling a spirit of co-operation, the convention emphasises the decline of the Ottoman Empire.

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