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British Costume from Earliest Times to 1820 [Paperback]

Mrs. Charles H. Ashdown
1.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

Sept. 13 2001 Dover Fashion and Costumes
Hard-to-find classic drew on primary sources — actual costumes, illuminated manuscripts, effigies, etc. — to provide authentic detailed coverage of what people wore in Britain from the early Saxon period (ca. A.D. 460) to the reign of King George III (1820). Clothing of commoners, royalty, and ecclesiastics. Indispensable for fashion historians.

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1.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining gallery of mistakes Nov. 9 2003
Format:Paperback
I just attended one of Robin Netherton's lectures about the accumulation of interpretation errors in early costume research during the Victorian years -- how one author would make a mistake, and that would be picked up by another author copying the first, and more mistakes laid on (with the best of intentions.) This book was presented as one of the most entertaining of these mistakes, because although the author used the at-the-time new photo printing technologies, she didn't use it for original sources (manuscript illustrations, etc) but for pictures of contemporary models in her interpretations of medieval clothing. The results are extremely funny. I expect similar problems with the other eras covered. I am ordering this book for its humor value and because I'm a medieval hat fanatic.
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Amazon.com: 2.5 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining gallery of mistakes Nov. 9 2003
By C. Virtue - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I just attended one of Robin Netherton's lectures about the accumulation of interpretation errors in early costume research during the Victorian years -- how one author would make a mistake, and that would be picked up by another author copying the first, and more mistakes laid on (with the best of intentions.) This book was presented as one of the most entertaining of these mistakes, because although the author used the at-the-time new photo printing technologies, she didn't use it for original sources (manuscript illustrations, etc) but for pictures of contemporary models in her interpretations of medieval clothing. The results are extremely funny. I expect similar problems with the other eras covered. I am ordering this book for its humor value and because I'm a medieval hat fanatic.
4.0 out of 5 stars Wealth of information! Aaaand horrible Victorian photos, if you're into that. Jan. 15 2014
By Claire E. Hummel - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
First things first- the previous reviewer's claims about the Victorian photo plates are absolutely, 100% spot-on. The plates are hilariously inaccurate, and make for weird distractions in an otherwise valuable costuming resource.

Besides that admittedly embarrassing oversight, I have no idea why this book would warrant one star. If you can look past the photos (please, god, look past them), there's a wealth of dense information in this book pointing to primary sources and often so granular as to name specific years and dates. Medieval fashion can be a tricky thing to research- there's so little documentation compared to later periods- so I absolutely appreciated this book as a look into the specific evolution of fashion during the so-called "earliest times." This should by no means be your sole resource for British costume, but I'd still argue that it would be an invaluable addition to your library.

Do you like hennins? BY GOD there are so many diagrams of hennins. You will drown in them. It's pretty great.
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