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PURSES HANDBAGS > PAGE 2

Exceptional Antique Victorian Half Mourning Purse Handbag Reticule ~ Fancy
Exceptional Antique Victorian Half Mourning Purse Handbag Reticule ~ Fancy
Exceptional Antique Victorian Half Mourning Purse Handbag Reticule ~ Fancy

Material:  Cotton
Color:  Black, Gray
Size:  Length ~ 15 inches, not including handle
          Width ~ 8 inches
Quantity:  1

While we occasionally encounter Victorian mourning handbags, this is the first half mourning example we have found.

The bag is a drawstring reticule style, typical of the 19th century Victorian era.  Black crochet forms the body, which is decorated on both front and back with large three dimensional roses and other elements similar to Irish Crochet work.  Eight large two inch long drops embellish the bottom, with four additional drops at each  handle, for a total of twelve.  The bag is lined with a pale gray very soft matte fabric, probably cambric.

All the other mourning bags we have found were constructed completely of black materials, as Victorian protocol regarding appropriate behavior, manners and deportment during what was viewed as a time of respect for the departed was quite strict.  Black clothing was de rigueur.  With the exception of white/cream collars, cuffs, etc., no color was allowed at all during the first stage of mourning, which usually lasted for one year and a day, nor was it allowed during the second stage, which lasted for about nine additional months. Following this, half mourning began and customarily lasted for three to six months.  During this time color was gradually introduced, but generally limited to gray, lilac, lavender, mauve and similar muted, soft shades.  The gray lining in this bag indicates that the purse was likely used during the half mourning period.

The hand bag is in exceptionally nice antique estate condition.  I see no breaks, snags or other issues to the crochet.  I believe the lining is original and it remains securely attached, with no tears, distress, stains, etc.  One of the drops at bag bottom has a few lighter appearing areas, as if more of whatever material is under the crochet is showing through on this particular drop for some reason, but this is very minor and insignificant, both structurally, as well as visually.

Really an exceptionally nice, rather unusual and harder to find antique Victorian era half mourning handbag example.  A great find for authentic period costumes, antique displays, or purse and specialty collectors.

Exceptional Antique Victorian Half Mourning Purse Handbag Reticule ~ Fancy

$ 95.00

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