Holt, Ardern. Fancy dresses described; or, what to wear at fancy balls. London: Debenham & Freebody, . 8vo (20.8 cm, 8.2"). vi, 253,  pp.; 16 col. plts.; 16 plts. [SOLD]
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Fifth edition, following the first of 1879. Illustrated with gorgeous chromolithographic and sepia plates (16 of each), this volume is an artifact of an era when “Girl Graduate” was as exotic and amusing a choice of costume as Guinevere, Anne Boleyn, Helen of Troy, or an Incroyable of 1789. The dictionary of appropriate women's roles offers numerous historical, theatrical, and musical
characters alongside ethnic, national, and fairy-tale portrayals, as well as slightly more abstract representations such as Air, Daffodil, Midnight, and Peace. An appendix provides costume suggestions for children, including Fairy, Red Riding Hood, Figaro, Puritan, and Francis I.
NSTC 0349544; Allibone 842 (first two eds.). Publisher's dark blue cloth, front cover and spine with gilt-stamped title; edges and extremities slightly rubbed, small areas of faint discoloration to lower edges. Hinges (inside) tender. Color plates slightly age-toned, a few with virtually invisible small areas of waterstaining to lower margins. (24345)