This is a truly exquisite collection of fashion illustrations, beginning with the fourth-century Roman Empire to the seventeenth-century. They are all hand-colored engravings by the nineteenth-century fashion illustrator Raphaël Jacquemin. The Dover edition includes 90 of the plates originally published in 1867 as Iconographie Générale et Méthodique du Costume du IVE au XIXE Siècle . Jacquemin used university libraries, the Louvre, and other archives as his sources.
I had originally bought it as a creative aid for the Medieval Fashions Coloring Book, but it is certainly a delight to browse through, especially if you, as me, have such an interest in historical costume. Most of the plates are of important people—kings and queens, nobles, religious and soldiers, and each plate is labeled. Here is just a few of the illustrations, spanning most of the years.. Enjoy this lovely collection!
Plate 1: Soldier of the 4th Dalmatian Cohort; 4th Century: Western Roman Empire
Plate 8: Italo-Roman Princess, 626; 7th Century: Rome
Plate 16: Nicephore Botaniate, Byzantine Emperor, 1078-81; 11th Century: Byzantine Empire
Plate 34: Knight-Counts of Neuchatel (Swiss), Count Louis (far right) 1342-73; 14th Century: Switzerland