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Coat

1795-1800 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

This double-breasted coat demonstrates the exaggerated style of the late 1790s. It has a very high turned-down collar and large revers (lapels). The coat is now cut straight across in front and, following the example of women’s dress, the waistline is several inches above the natural level. The double-breasted style in both coats and waistcoats was a fashion that began in the 1780s. Once a beautiful shot purple and blue, the dye colouring the silk of this coat has proved fugitive, and over time it has changed to a drab beige.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Silk, linen; hand-woven, hand-sewn
Brief Description
Man's coat, 1795-1800, British or French; Peacock blue and purple silk twill, double-breasted
Physical Description
A man’s coat of shot peacock-blue and purple silk twill, with a 2-piece, 5¼-inch (13.2 cm), turned-down collar, revers and curving, 2-piece sleeves ending in blind cuffs, 2⅝ inches (6.7 cm) deep. The fronts are cut across at the waist, with pleats 2-inch deep (5 cm), beside the centre back. Each front has a pocket with a shaped pocket flap and a buttoned pocket underneath. The centre-back seam is open below the hip. The back and sleeves are lined with linen, the skirts with the shot blue and purple silk twill, the pockets with coarse linen. There is 1 worked buttonhole on the left front edge, with 4 self-covered buttons to the left of it, and 3 buttons (1 missing) on the right front. Underneath each cuff is a small self-covered button and worked buttonhole. There is 1 button at the top and 1 at the hem of the pleats, and 2 in between.
Dimensions
  • Top of right collar to hem length: 130.0cm (approx)
  • Including sleeves width: 51in
  • Chest under armholes circumference: 99.0cm (approx)
Object history
Purchased. Registered File number 30319/1902.
Summary
This double-breasted coat demonstrates the exaggerated style of the late 1790s. It has a very high turned-down collar and large revers (lapels). The coat is now cut straight across in front and, following the example of women’s dress, the waistline is several inches above the natural level. The double-breasted style in both coats and waistcoats was a fashion that began in the 1780s. Once a beautiful shot purple and blue, the dye colouring the silk of this coat has proved fugitive, and over time it has changed to a drab beige.
Bibliographic Reference
Victoria and Albert Museum (Nathalie Rothstein, ed.) Four Hundred Years of Fashion. London, Victoria & Albert Museum, 1984, cat. 100.
Collection
Accession Number
940-1902

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record createdMarch 1, 2003
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