Monday, October 22, 2012

The Language of Fans

The fan became the perfect little instrument  for ladies off the 16th century up to the 1800's  creating such things as intrigue, love and scandal  and throughout the whole of Europe no true lady would be seen without one, and in an age where freedom of speech for women was very restricted this modish little machine played an important role. Initially  fans were designed for  self- cooling, but  users of the fans of all shapes and sizes (that goes for the ladies too) quickly developed their own language, depending on how the fan was used a signal was sent, holding it to the left ear meant "I want you to leave me alone" or to let it slide on the forehead "You have changed". There are many more ......

 I found a great blog called  "The Victorian Times" which gives you a wonderful and  often humorous insight into Victorian days and the language off fans, but for now I just wanted to collect a few beautiful fans to admire.   Here are  some of them. Which one would you pick? 







3 comments:

Diane said...

Wow, these are beautiful. I really like the second one below the text - although I must be loyal and love the last one, lol! (Thank you for including it!) I lived for many years in Spain, where fan language was huge back in the day. Some of Goya's paintings are great scenes of women and their fans. But even now, modern Spanish women will use fans to cool off in the summer heat. I have a few "everyday" fans - in the proper colors to match my outfits! None are as intricately designed as these, though; they're mostly solid colors.

Kayla @ TheEclecticElement said...

I never knew fans were THAT intricate! How neat :) I'd love to read all about that myself just because I'm curious.

I think I'd definitely choose the first one with all the feathers; more dramatic ^.^

Chrissie Marshall said...

Thanks Diane and why not and it was a pleasure to find it. Kayla I never knew the history and thought apart from self-cooling it was to hide bad teeth and breath:)

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