- Series: Dover Fashion and Costumes
- Paperback: 256 pages
- Publisher: Dover Publications; 2 edition (June 1, 1975)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 048623150X
- ISBN-13: 978-0486231501
- Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 0.6 x 11.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 16 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #87,385 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Historic Costume in Pictures (Dover Fashion and Costumes) 2nd Edition
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From the Back Cover
From 1861 to 1890 the Munich publishing firm of Braun & Schneider published plates of historic and contemporary costume in their magazine Münchener Bilderbogen. These plates were eventually collected in book form and published at the turn of the century in Germany and England. This volume presents all 125 double-spread plates from the third English edition. For the first time, the plates appear in chronological order and with English captions.
Over 1,450 costumed figures are shown, from antiquity to the end of the nineteenth century, covering a wide variety of social classes, and professions: Egyptian and Assyrian kings, Byzantine emperors, Frankish and Norman nobles, priests, servants, soldiers of many lands and eras, crusaders, German knights, pages, Italian scholars, German townspeople, peasants, merchants, Dutch burghers, popes, nuns, bishops, monks, English Puritans and Cavaliers, English and French kings, Swiss citizens, French courtiers and republicans, and many more. In addition, there is excellent coverage of late-nineteenth-century folk and their costumes, captured just before the beginning of standard Western dress—Italian, Spanish, Dutch, French, German, Russian, Eastern European, Chinese, Japanese, Asian, and others. To avoid the variable and somewhat fanciful depictions of color in the early editions, all costumes are rendered in black-and-white.
A comprehensive source of historic costume in pictures, this remarkable book will be invaluable to costume designers, students of fashion design, commercial artists, and anyone interested in the history of dress. The illustrations are uniformly excellent, and the exceptionally low price makes this book even more attractive.
Top customer reviews
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A must have for any artist doing period art or costumer doing medieval costuming.
Furthermore, there are no references of any kind, so you can't go back to the "original" painting, or source to verify the information. It may be helpful for getting ideas, but not for any serious costume design.
It's amazing how quickly the world changes. When I first got this book in the early 1980s, it was a stupendous resource. It has nearly 1500 costumes from all periods in history, rendered in stunning detail. You can see the ruffles of lace on a dress. The gentle folds of fabric. You get peasants and nobles, religious people and soldiers. You get Biblical times, the Renaissance, Medieval Ages, and pretty much everything else. Even if your interest is just in one particular period (I'm fond of the Medieval period) there's a wealth of information to work with.
Fast forward to the days of the Internet and now people complain "Well, these are all historic images from the 1800s - meaning they're out of copyright. And they're now mostly online!" I suppose that is now true. Even so, there are times that having a nicely done large-size printout in front of you is far better than a fuzzy scan someone posted on a webpage which may or may not be there tomorrow. I definitely appreciate having a printed copy in front of me which I know is always on my shelf and printed at a good quality level.
There are people who complain that this is black and white. Did you look at the low price tag of the book? :). If this book was full glossy color, for probably 250 pages, it would be MUCH more expensive. Also, as one can see from the historical documents created by Braun & Schneider, the color versions were fairly randomly painted in. They weren't necessarily historically accurate, in terms of the color. That could lead to HUGE problems for anybody actually using a color version as a guide for costume or research. I far prefer the black and white. That means I can research for myself which colors would be appropriate for a given situation without being misled by what an artist in the 1800s decided a dress "should be".
Also, the original plates (which one usually finds online) had German information - it's helpful to have the English translation here. So you can more easily tell if someone is a merchant, a servant, a General, or so on.
All in all, I highly recommend this book for anybody interested in traditional outfits. If there is a very specific item of clothing you're looking for, look through the table of contents first to make sure it's covered, but other than that, the book has pretty much everything one could want for most purposes.