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Re: Clothing in the Court of Dracula

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  • Amy L. Hornburg Heilveil
    The woman who was killed because of what her husband was wearing - his shirt was too short, reaching only to mid-thigh rather than as it should have been. He
    Message 1 of 8 , May 1, 2003
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      The woman who was killed because of what her husband was wearing - his
      shirt was too short, reaching only to mid-thigh rather than as it should
      have been. He was not reported to have been wearing rags - his shirt was
      too short which was looked on as slovenly workmanship by his wife.

      Vlad was, as a child, taken as a royal hostage by the Turks in order that
      his father, the ruler of Wallachia at the time, would work for/with the
      Turks in manners they approved. Thus, his influences from a very young age
      are from the Ottomans. The likelyhood that he would have worn salwar (the
      Turkish pants that your friend writes of) is rather high, though none have
      been found in graves or pictured in portraits so far as I know at this
      time. While among the Turks, Vlad learned many ways of torture and
      execution not yet known to Wallachia and it's surrounding regions - that's
      where he learned of impaling people. He didn't invent it, he just became
      famous for it. There is also the possibility that he would have turned his
      back on some of the material culture of the Ottomans due to his
      imprisonment, making the use of salwar just as improbable.

      Women from different lands tend to bring with them the fashion of their
      home. In many instances, those fashions yield with time to regional
      preferences. For instance, the impact that Mary Hapsburg had on the fashion
      of Hungary during her time as wife of Louis II was minimal. Therefore,
      trying to base the fashion of a country off of the clothing of a bride from
      another country is not generally accepted as reliable.

      Pictures, hangings, fresco paintings, and embroideries of women (granted,
      wives of the rulers) usually depict them in garments similar to those of
      their male counterparts. Long overgowns (kaftans) with buttons or closures
      up the front, sometimes also on the sleeves. The garments under this are
      mostly speculation as, again, finds for those are very limited. A singular
      garment that looks similar to a modern sundress with its fitted bodice
      attached to a very full skirt, the bodice having six buttons in the front
      has been found, but it is the only one of it's kind of which I know (this
      is the only garment to give any credence to your #4 point of women in
      Wallachia wearing kirtles similar what all other women, particularly the
      German women, were wearing in Western Europe at this time). It is
      speculated that under this garment would have been something akin to the
      'shift' or 'chemise' and over it would have been worn a more ornate
      'kaftan' with it's closures in front and either long hanging sleeves
      (slitted at the elbow for the arm to go through)or short sleeves, curved at
      the inner portion of the elbow to allow better movement. Under the second
      type of kaftan is usually seen (on the arms) a garment that buttons at the
      wrist, or from the wrist to nearly the elbow - also usually in an ornate
      fabric. Sometimes the outermost kaftan is lined with fur, occasionally it
      is not.

      The houppeland and the kaftan have many major differences in construction,
      fit, and look. The fashions of Eastern Europe were commented on by
      travelers as being different. When Hungarians visited the courts of
      Western Europe as late as the 16th century, their different mode of dress
      was noted by those who saw them. You're making the dangerous assumption
      that everyone wore the same thing in the East and West at this time.

      As to the fabrics of the area, it is good to remember that portions of
      Wallachia were along major trading routes between the East and West. With
      the constant wars and change of rulers and the traveling merchants, it is
      likely that the fabrics used would more likely have been silks, wools, and
      furs, due to the ease of procurement for these things in such a region, as
      well as for warmth in the cool castles and harsh winters of the Carpathian
      Mountains. Linen certainly would have also been used, but probably more for
      the lower classes and for garments close to the skin. Many of the fabrics
      depicted in art and from grave digs are very similar to those of the
      Ottomans. Cotton would have most certainly been rare to nearly non-existent
      in Wallachia, as it was throughout Europe for the purpose of clothing.

      The Germans had occupied a section of Wallachia from the 12th century, when
      they were employed to help fend off the Turks. In the 13th century, the
      Saxon community was granted the right to build a fortified town within
      Wallachia - which was very nice since they had already done so. Their
      influence on the ruling class of Wallachia's clothing seems to have been
      minimal from what we have of grave digs, portraits, and frescoes left on
      walls through the region. BTW, to this day, particularly in Brasov, there
      is still a strong Saxon presence and the tensions between them, the
      Hungarians, and the Wallachians are rather high. Saxon children are raised
      speaking German and attending German speaking schools....

      As for the headwear of the women, most depictions of them (again, usually
      wives of rulers) show high crowns worn with veils underneath. Hair is not
      seen. There are also pictures of some wider brimmed hat sorts of things
      (similar to a Saxon style but lacking the feathers) and some with coif type
      hats under the wide brimmed hats - those I have only as re-drawings I
      think, so I'm not as sure of them as the crown with veil. Nearly all that
      I recall are wearing, under the hats, veils that fall nearly to their
      breasts in length. Viewing the frescos and portraits, the styles of
      headwear for men can be quite varied and the style in which Vlad is most
      frequently shown (most publications use the same portrait of him) is most
      certainly not the only style worn by men of the region. Judging the manner
      in which men of an entire region based on the portraits of a single man of
      that time and region is also not recommended. It would be similar to saying
      that all men in Hollywood in the 1970's were bald based on a picture of
      Cojack. One can ascertain how that man dressed his hair, but not how his
      compatriots would have done.

      Pearls are seen on a number of garments for both men and women in frescos,
      as are more ornate (what we would today call) trims on the garments.

      Evidence for the time frame in which you are choosing to work is very
      scarce and the publications one finds must be viewed with tremendous
      scrutiny due to political leanings of authors and the fondness that
      Rumanians seem to have for burning their past and beginning
      again. However, from written accounts of those who entertained
      dignitaries, frescos, embroideries, grave finds, and portraits all of the
      years shortly following (50 years or so) those you choose to study, some
      extrapolations can be made which fall more in line with the thinking that
      Wallachians and Eastern Europeans in general dressed much differently from
      Western Europe.

      Cu Drag,
      Domina Despina ot Brasov


      ----------
      "Re-creation necessarily implies research before the craftwork
      starts. If you haven't done the research, you can create, but you
      cannot possibly RE-create." [Arval d'Espas Nord]


      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Kinjal of Moravia
      ... as Seljuk and Mongolian directions. Also consider Marmauk and Thracian influence My research into Kievian culture has led me thinking that there was no
      Message 2 of 8 , May 1, 2003
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        --- In sig@yahoogroups.com, "Amy L. Hornburg Heilveil"
        <aheilvei@u...> wrote:
        >
        > consentration of the 'Ottoman' influence will not be as productive
        as 'Seljuk'and 'Mongolian' directions. Also consider Marmauk and
        Thracian influence

        My research into Kievian culture has led me thinking that there was
        no specific dress, each wearing what worked for their task.

        You may also want to explore the writings if St. Elizabeth of
        Hungary, thogh she is of an earlier peirod.
        > "
        Kinjal
      • Alexandreina Dragos
        ... his ... should ... shirt was ... Ah ha, yes that was it! Thank you! Funny, I had marked this in my personal first draft to look up again because I knew I
        Message 3 of 8 , May 1, 2003
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          --- In sig@yahoogroups.com, "Amy L. Hornburg Heilveil"
          <aheilvei@u...> wrote:
          >
          > The woman who was killed because of what her husband was wearing -
          his
          > shirt was too short, reaching only to mid-thigh rather than as it
          should
          > have been. He was not reported to have been wearing rags - his
          shirt was
          > too short which was looked on as slovenly workmanship by his wife.

          Ah ha, yes that was it! Thank you! Funny, I had marked this in my
          personal first draft to look up again because I knew I was off as to
          the particulars. LOL

          >
          > Vlad was, as a child, taken as a royal hostage by the Turks in
          order that
          > his father, the ruler of Wallachia at the time, would work for/with
          the
          > Turks in manners they approved. Thus, his influences from a very
          young age
          > are from the Ottomans.

          Yes, I am very aware of that.


          The likelyhood that he would have worn salwar (the
          > Turkish pants that your friend writes of) is rather high, though
          none have
          > been found in graves or pictured in portraits so far as I know at
          this
          > time. While among the Turks, Vlad learned many ways of torture and
          > execution not yet known to Wallachia and it's surrounding regions -
          that's
          > where he learned of impaling people. He didn't invent it, he just
          became
          > famous for it. There is also the possibility that he would have
          turned his
          > back on some of the material culture of the Ottomans due to his
          > imprisonment, making the use of salwar just as improbable.

          Indeed. I go back and forth on this a lot. He was raised for many
          years among the Turks so certainly they influenced him in many
          regards. However, he also hated them and fought against them all his
          life so the question is always; Did he adopt their fashions because
          they were comfprtable and familiar or did he reject them utterly
          because he hated them?

          >
          > Women from different lands tend to bring with them the fashion of
          their
          > home. In many instances, those fashions yield with time to
          regional
          > preferences. For instance, the impact that Mary Hapsburg had on the
          fashion
          > of Hungary during her time as wife of Louis II was minimal.
          Therefore,
          > trying to base the fashion of a country off of the clothing of a
          bride from
          > another country is not generally accepted as reliable.

          This is true however Beatrix DID have a good deal of influence on the
          fashions of the Hungarian court. The paintings and busts I have seen
          that date from after her marriage to Matthius show a VERY Italian
          influence. However, again, this is moot as it's past the period I'm
          looking into.

          >
          > Pictures, hangings, fresco paintings, and embroideries of women
          (granted,
          > wives of the rulers) usually depict them in garments similar to
          those of
          > their male counterparts.


          PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE point me to these references. My searches
          have been VERY frustrating. If I could SEE these pics, hangings,
          frescoes and embroideries of Eastern Europe of the 1450s and 1460s
          you speak of it would go a LONG way towards helping me.


          Long overgowns (kaftans) with buttons or closures
          > up the front, sometimes also on the sleeves. The garments under
          this are
          > mostly speculation as, again, finds for those are very limited. A
          singular
          > garment that looks similar to a modern sundress with its fitted
          bodice
          > attached to a very full skirt, the bodice having six buttons in the
          front
          > has been found, but it is the only one of it's kind of which I know


          Do you have an aproximate date for this garment? And a location???


          (this
          > is the only garment to give any credence to your #4 point of women
          in
          > Wallachia wearing kirtles similar what all other women,
          particularly the
          > German women, were wearing in Western Europe at this time). It is
          > speculated that under this garment would have been something akin
          to the
          > 'shift' or 'chemise' and over it would have been worn a more ornate
          > 'kaftan' with it's closures in front and either long hanging
          sleeves
          > (slitted at the elbow for the arm to go through)or short sleeves,
          curved at
          > the inner portion of the elbow to allow better movement. Under the
          second
          > type of kaftan is usually seen (on the arms) a garment that buttons
          at the
          > wrist, or from the wrist to nearly the elbow - also usually in an
          ornate
          > fabric. Sometimes the outermost kaftan is lined with fur,
          occasionally it
          > is not.


          Again, if you can tell me where you get this information it would be
          DEEPLY appreciated!


          >
          > The houppeland and the kaftan have many major differences in
          construction,
          > fit, and look. The fashions of Eastern Europe were commented on by
          > travelers as being different. When Hungarians visited the courts
          of
          > Western Europe as late as the 16th century, their different mode of
          dress
          > was noted by those who saw them. You're making the dangerous
          assumption
          > that everyone wore the same thing in the East and West at this time.


          No, not exactly. In fact I am trying to pin down what the
          differences were. Was Eastern Europe more influenced by the Middle
          East or by Central European fashions? Were they wearing something
          altogether different from either area? Inquiring minds wanna know!
          Yes, I am certain there are many differences in construction between
          the houppelande and the kaftan. I've made both. But both are full,
          long, voluminous garments that, though worn differently, have the
          same general appearance. So which was being worn in Dracula's court?
          Without concrete evidence both seem equally likely to me.

          >
          > As to the fabrics of the area, it is good to remember that portions
          of
          > Wallachia were along major trading routes between the East and
          West. With
          > the constant wars and change of rulers and the traveling merchants,
          it is
          > likely that the fabrics used would more likely have been silks,
          wools, and
          > furs, due to the ease of procurement for these things in such a
          region, as
          > well as for warmth in the cool castles and harsh winters of the
          Carpathian
          > Mountains. Linen certainly would have also been used, but probably
          more for
          > the lower classes and for garments close to the skin. Many of the
          fabrics
          > depicted in art and from grave digs are very similar to those of
          the
          > Ottomans.


          Yes and I belive I touched on that. Perhaps I should add more detail.

          Cotton would have most certainly been rare to nearly non-existent
          > in Wallachia, as it was throughout Europe for the purpose of
          clothing.

          Yep, touched on that too.

          >
          > The Germans had occupied a section of Wallachia from the 12th
          century, when
          > they were employed to help fend off the Turks. In the 13th
          century, the
          > Saxon community was granted the right to build a fortified town
          within
          > Wallachia - which was very nice since they had already done so.

          LOL True! I know a good deal about the political climate of the
          time and what happened when. Hence my interest in the first place.
          What's lacking is a sure knowledge of the clothing!

          Their
          > influence on the ruling class of Wallachia's clothing seems to have
          been
          > minimal from what we have of grave digs, portraits, and frescoes
          left on
          > walls through the region.

          So can you expand on the more obvious differences? Are there online
          pics of these portraits and frescoes you refer to?


          BTW, to this day, particularly in Brasov, there
          > is still a strong Saxon presence and the tensions between them, the
          > Hungarians, and the Wallachians are rather high. Saxon children are
          raised
          > speaking German and attending German speaking schools....
          >
          > As for the headwear of the women, most depictions of them (again,
          usually
          > wives of rulers) show high crowns worn with veils underneath. Hair
          is not
          > seen. There are also pictures of some wider brimmed hat sorts of
          things
          > (similar to a Saxon style but lacking the feathers) and some with
          coif type
          > hats under the wide brimmed hats - those I have only as re-drawings
          I
          > think, so I'm not as sure of them as the crown with veil.

          Even that would be nice to see!


          Nearly all that
          > I recall are wearing, under the hats, veils that fall nearly to
          their
          > breasts in length. Viewing the frescos and portraits, the styles
          of
          > headwear for men can be quite varied and the style in which Vlad is
          most
          > frequently shown (most publications use the same portrait of him)
          is most
          > certainly not the only style worn by men of the region. Judging the
          manner
          > in which men of an entire region based on the portraits of a single
          man of
          > that time and region is also not recommended.
          It would be similar to saying
          > that all men in Hollywood in the 1970's were bald based on a
          picture of
          > Cojack. One can ascertain how that man dressed his hair, but not
          how his
          > compatriots would have done.

          Of course there were other styles and I would certainly not dispute
          that. But also it is common to emulate your ruler.

          >
          > Pearls are seen on a number of garments for both men and women in
          frescos,
          > as are more ornate (what we would today call) trims on the garments.

          I reallllly want to see these frescoes you keep refering to. A
          little more information on them please????

          >
          > Evidence for the time frame in which you are choosing to work is
          very
          > scarce and the publications one finds must be viewed with
          tremendous
          > scrutiny due to political leanings of authors and the fondness that
          > Rumanians seem to have for burning their past and beginning
          > again. However, from written accounts of those who entertained
          > dignitaries, frescos, embroideries, grave finds, and portraits all
          of the
          > years shortly following (50 years or so) those you choose to study,
          some
          > extrapolations can be made which fall more in line with the
          thinking that
          > Wallachians and Eastern Europeans in general dressed much
          differently from
          > Western Europe.
          >
          > Cu Drag,
          > Domina Despina ot Brasov
          >
          >
          Thank you very much for your observations and help. Please help me
          even more by letting me know where you get your references from that
          I may find and study them myself. Alas, otherwise they are not of
          much use to me.
          Regards,
          Reina
        • abbondanza
          Alexandreina, A few ideas to aid you in your pursuit of an educational adventure ;) Royal portraits are usually in museums, contacting the large Art museums in
          Message 4 of 8 , May 1, 2003
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            Alexandreina,

            A few ideas to aid you in your pursuit of an educational
            adventure ;)

            Royal portraits are usually in museums, contacting the large
            Art museums in Europe will not only be fun but also a sound
            investment of your time.
            A quick email to: The Hermitage (yes, they have more there than
            late period Czarist works), The Louvre, The Prado etc. asking if
            they have any East European Royal portraits and if yes, could
            they send you a color copy?
            Larger Eastern U.S. art museums usually have a few east european
            portraits due to the mirgration of East Europenas who settled
            near the waterways of the Eastern seaboard over to the Great
            Lakes.
            The Met in NY, the Getty, Washington Gallery of Art, etc.
            are all online.

            Also, look at minted coins from the time period that you are
            interested in, they can be most revealing ;)
            This is usually listed as "numismatics"

            The Art Periodicals, such as The Smithsonian have online search
            engines to review all of their periodicals, of course, you will
            have to go to a larger library and look up the articles as they
            are not all online, I have seen some interesting similarities
            between Swedish Queens and Polish Queens.

            Have fun ;) enjoy your adventure!
            THL Antoinette de la Croix
            Aethelmearc

            PS: Despina! Thank you for such a thorough missive on this
            matter!!!! I always enjoy hearing your view, opinions and the
            fruits of your intensive studies. You inspire me, as usual.



            __________________________________
            Do you Yahoo!?
            The New Yahoo! Search - Faster. Easier. Bingo.
            http://search.yahoo.com
          • Jeanne Papanastasiou
            He was raised for many years among the Turks so certainly they influenced him in many regards. However, he also hated them and fought against them all his
            Message 5 of 8 , May 1, 2003
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              He was raised for many years among the Turks so certainly they influenced
              him in many regards. However, he also hated them and fought against them
              all his
              life so the question is always; Did he adopt their fashions because
              they were comfortable and familiar or did he reject them utterly
              because he hated them?

              Remember the adage, we become what we hate/loathe.

              Soffya Appollonia Tudja
              http://www.aeonline.biz/Links.htm
              Argent, a patriarchal cross between three crescent gules on a chief sable
              three fleur-de-lys Or







              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            • jenne@fiedlerfamily.net
              ... *blink* I wasn t aware St. Elizabeth of Hungary had written anything! Do you know the titles? -- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa jenne@fiedlerfamily.net I m tired.
              Message 6 of 8 , May 2, 2003
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                > You may also want to explore the writings if St. Elizabeth of
                > Hungary, thogh she is of an earlier peirod.

                *blink* I wasn't aware St. Elizabeth of Hungary had written anything! Do
                you know the titles?

                -- Jadwiga Zajaczkowa jenne@...
                "I'm tired. I'm tired of feeling rejected by the American people. I'm
                tired of waking up in the middle of the night worrying about the war."
                -- L.B. Johnson
              • Alexandreina Dragos
                ... *snippage* Wonderful ideas all! Thank you! I ll let you know what I find. Regards, Reina
                Message 7 of 8 , May 2, 2003
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                  --- In sig@yahoogroups.com, abbondanza <delacroi29@y...> wrote:
                  > Alexandreina,
                  >
                  > A few ideas to aid you in your pursuit of an educational
                  > adventure ;)
                  >
                  *snippage*
                  Wonderful ideas all! Thank you! I'll let you know what I find.
                  Regards,
                  Reina
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