Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Elizabethan Vizard Mask

From Arch News:
A Visard mask, was worn by gentlewomen in the 16th and possibly into the early 17th centuries. The mask was found during the renovation of an inner wall of a 16th century stone building.

The wall was approximately 4-foot thick, and the mask was found concealed within the inner hard core of the wall, which consisted of soil, straw and horse hair (for insulation). The mask was folded in half, lengthways, and placed within a small rectangular niche behind the face of the wall. Due to the conditions when found, the mask has an amount of soil and straw adhering to one half. The opposite half still has the velvet material in relatively good condition, but is in need of some conservation to prevent further damage.

Visard Mask, which covers the whole face, having holes for the eyes, a case for the nose, and a slit for the mouth, and to speak through; this kind of Mask is taken off and put in a moment of time, being only held in the Teeth by means of a round bead fastned on the inside over against the mouth.

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