Wednesday, June 20, 2012

More on Mary

Unknown painter - Portrait of Kunigunde
of Austria, 1485 
Thanks for all the great comments on my last post!  Marion McNealy (from the Curious Frau for those of you not into German costuming), as it turns out, as a pintrest board (I love pintrest!) with some other gowns that are quite similar to the Mary of Hungary gown, including the Austrian example at left.  You can check it out here.  There are several examples there of what look to be decorative smocks which would be worn over a kirtle of some sort.  Looking at those images, I'm a lot more comfortable with the 1490ish dating of the gown.  The fancy over-smock is a feature of German costume at the time, and partlets were worn in more Western countries both over and under the bodice, so it makes sense.  The smock in this case is quite long, at least based on the pattern diagram of it I've been able to find, but having tried to wear short full smocks like this before the extra length would be a help as it would keep the whole thing tucked in neatly.

Of course now I wonder if the provenance of the gown is correct.  Given that it's a royal gown I would tend to think the history of it is at least somewhat correct and that Mary wore it, but why she would choose to wear something out of date by several decades is an open issue.  Marion suggested she may have been wearing one of Mary of Burgundy's gown, or one belonging to her sister in law, for the coronation festivities that occurred in the 1520s.  This makes sense and bears a bit more research.  I did find a website devoted to Hungarian art, so that should be a bit of a help.  There are a few images there that show gowns quite similar to this one.  Hopefully I will be able to find some reliable information on coordinating head-wear while I'm poking around.

So now I have a lot to think about, and may have to actually write up documentation on this project.  If I find anything interesting I will be sure to post about it.  I'm really wishing I spoke about 5 languages this week though, between this project and the Lengberg "bras" (more on that later) I'm running into a lot of translation issues.

1 comment:

  1. Ugh. I hear you on the language issue - tis so annoying, especially coming from a science background where there is the tradition that almost everything worth reading is published in English (yes, I'm spoilt - but it is so helpful).

    I'll be looking forward to your post on the Lengberg 'bras'. I'm hoping to got to the Medieval Dress & Textile Society meeting this autumn and hear about them (in English!).