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Banyan

  • Place of origin:

    Coromandel Coast, India (fabric, made)
    Holland (possibly, tailored)
    England, Great Britain (possibly, tailored)

  • Date:

    1750-1775 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown (production)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Cotton chintz painted and dyed, and lined with block-printed cotton

  • Museum number:

    T.215-1992

  • Gallery location:

    South Asia, room 41, case 6B

The loosely cut style of this banyan (a man's informal robe) is based on that of the Japanese kimono, although the word itself is derived from the Indian word, banya, for a merchant or trader. Robes like this became popular in England and Holland from the mid-17th century, and were often made up of imported Indian chintz fabric, as in this case. Banyans could also be made of Chinese, or sometimes French, silk. Their generically 'oriental' air was part of a wider taste for exotic designs that formed part of the Chinoiserie style.

Physical description

Man's floor-length and long-sleeved chintz banyan night robe, loose cut, and lined with printed cotton. Red ground Indian floral chintz and lined with a block printed in red on a cream ground in a repeated stylised leaf pattern. T-shaped garment constructed on the same principles as that of a man's shirt. The back is made from a single width of cotton although it is not cut selvedge to selvedge. Both fronts and parts of the sleeves are continued from the back without shoulder seams. The under arm seams are continuous with the side seams. Additional width and shaping to the skirt of the garment is achieved by the insertion of two pairs of gussets in each side seam below pocket level and extending to the hem. The vertical pocket holes and bags of linen with pointed flaps are set into the side seam well below the cuffs of the sleeves. The lining is cut on the same principle to match the outer chintz.

Place of Origin

Coromandel Coast, India (fabric, made)
Holland (possibly, tailored)
England, Great Britain (possibly, tailored)

Date

1750-1775 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown (production)

Materials and Techniques

Cotton chintz painted and dyed, and lined with block-printed cotton

Dimensions

Width: 47 in along the arms, maximum, Width: 190 cm along the arms, maximum, Length: 57 in neck to hem, Length: 145 cm neck to hem

Object history note

Purchased. Registered File number 1992/1253.

Descriptive line

Man's cotton chintz banyan lined with block-printed cotton, fabric made in Coromandel Coast, possibly tailored in Netherlands or England, 1750-1775

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Irwin, John and Katharine Brett. Origins of Chintz. London: HMSO, 1970. Catalogue Part 3: Costume, p.108, pl. 96.
Red ground.
Man's morning gown. Coromandel Coast (Northern region) early 18th century. Japanese influence on design and pattern.

Production Note

The chintz fabric was made in South-east India (the 'Coromandel Coast') for the Western market, and it was made up in Holland or England. The lining is European.

Materials

Cotton (textile); Chintz

Techniques

Painted; Block printed; Lined; Dyed

Categories

Men's clothes; Fashion; Nightwear; Textiles; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection code

T&F

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