Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Forbidden feathers

On June 1, 1785 Eliza Sheridan wrote of a visit to the theatre where, as usual, eyes were mostly on those off the stage:
'The King, Queen, and the Three Princesses with two of the younger childred occupied two Boxes fronting the Orchestra. The Duchess of Devonshire and all the women of Fashion in a gallery near them...With regard to the company the Women appeared to disadvantage as being forbid Hats and Feathers they had almost uniformly put on the most disfiguring head-dress I ever saw — A Mob of a most immense size, simply illustrated with blue or yellow ribbons — this over friz'd Heads and sallow complexions had a very bad effect — a few with fair skins and clear brown hair bore the disguise tollerably.'


  1. It is really interesting that nothing has changed today. Most people even today go to events just to be seen.

  2. It'd be a shame for them to be seen without the fashionable attire they desired due to a ban ;)

  3. Hi, do you have a reference for this? I am writing a dissertation on the Devonshire House Circle and would love to use the extract as it lends perfectly to my argument.