--- In Italian_Rennaissance_Costuming@yahoogroups.com
, "Catherine de
Gray <sister_dark_swan@y...>" <sister_dark_swan@y...> wrote:
> --- In Italian_Rennaissance_Costuming@yahoogroups.com, Giuliana di
> Grazia <juliana916@y...> wrote:
>Question for y'all: I've only seen embroidery on
> camicias, on the neckline and cuffs (?), and in one painting what
> looked like embroidery on the hem of an underskirt
> Bacchiacca, details from St. John the Baptist, 1520) and on aprons.
> Did they ever do embroidery on gowns at all?
I had this same sort of questions once, too. I think you need to take
a look at what was happening in Italy at the time of interest.
There's a lot of political change going on throughout the northern
part of the peninsula between 1490 and 1530.
There was Savanrola in Florence along with the expulsion of the
Medici; the rapid change-over of politically diametric Popes in Rome;
the invasion by the Spanish, the French and the Holy Roman Empire
into various parts of Italy. Then there's the sack of Rome in 1527-
ish by both Spanish Catholics and German Protestants. The Italian
city-states did not unite to protect their borders from the invaders.
They used a lot of mercenaries to fight the invaders as well as each
other. Pope Julius II (a Medici) led his own troops. When I consider
the tapestry of events, I try to imagine what it was like to live in
a wartime culture where exchange of information was shaky and news
traveled slowly. The economy wouldn't have been stable, there would
have been fear at the news of encroaching armies, and people may have
been looking for reasons to turn in their neighbors as spies. The
average person was Catholic and Rome wasn't that far away,
particularly with the Pope sending forth his own troops. Threat of
personal safety does weird things to people's brains; just look at
what people allowed to happen to each other in both World Wars just
to keep themselves and their families safe. I imagine that wearing
clothes with elaborate decoration would have been like waving a red
flag - it probably would have brought unwelcome attention. More than
likely the small touches of embroidery at neck and cuffs were
considered modest enough that they didn't draw undue attention.
Food for Thought,