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14th-15th c. Womens 'Lancelot du Lac' Cotehardie

Price:: $249.95

 

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Sizes and Colors:

 

 

 

 

  • Based on artwork in the 'Lancelot du Lac' manuscript
  • Made in 100% Linen
  • All interior seams finished
  • Includes our signature lacing with a full placket for a flattering, almost custom fit
  • Fully tailored sleeve with long buttoned cuff to elbow
  • Coordinates with our Men's laced cotehardie
  • Available in striking combinations either solid or with contrast sleeves
  • Colors: Black, Gold, Red, Blue and Dark Green
  • Price: $249.95
Our Lancelot du Lac Cotehardie in Blue w/ Gold Sleeves worn with Silk Oval Veil in White and Yellow

About our 'Lancelot du Lac' Cotehardie 

Our new 14th century gown is a form of cotehardie based on contemporary artwork, specifically the splendid examples in the Lancelot du Lac manuscript (c.1380). This magnificently illustrated rendition of Chretien de Troyes' account of the quest for the Grail, was produced for the court of Bernarbo Visconti, Count of Milan, and it remains one the most cherished pictorial sources for fashion, arms, and armour in aristocratic courts of the late 14th century.

The gowns depicted in Lancelot are of a classic form that was particularly popular in northern Italy and France during the last quarter of the 14th century: a gown fitted in the torso with a front-closure, flaring from the hips into full skirts and a short train. The arms are generously full to the elbow, at which point they significantly taper to follow the line of the forearm. The sleeve buttons from elbow to the cuff with cast, metal buttons, as is depicted in the manuscript. We have followed contemporary artwork by seaming the sleeve at the elbow and making the lower sleeve out of a contrasting color of fabric. This was a common, and particularly attractive, feature of the Italian cyprianae, which we have faithfully reproduced.

The gowns shown in the Lancelot manuscript are meant to represent the clothing of a royal court, and their real-world counterparts would have been cut and sewn to fit each customer. Because they are a very difficult garment to fit "off the rack", we have departed from what is illustrated for the garment's closure. While these are universally buttoned in the Lancelot manuscript, this again requires customers to either have a tailored garment, or to wear their cotehardie with a loose fit. Not satisfied with this, we have chosen to use the same front-lacing placket design that has made our early 15th century front-laced gown so popular, and allows a better fit for a wider variety of body-types. Lacing was a common alternative amongst middle-class and aristocratic ladies of the late 14th century. The cyprianae itself was always side or back-laced, while front-laced "cottardite" in "French fashion", are specifically denoted in the trousseau of Valentina Visconti, upon her 1389 marriage to Charles V son Louis, the Duke of Orleans. This combination of function and fashion creates a unique gown that is easy to dress yourself in, yet would look at home in the illustrated pages of a 14th century romance.

Our Lancelot du Lac gown is available in linen with a linen contrast lower sleeve. All edges are finished or fully enclosed, improving both aesthetics and durability. As was done in the 14th century, the cotehardie can be worn alone over a linen undergown, or beneath a sideless surcoat, exposing to the belt worn at the hips.

 

Photo Gallery 

 


Three views of our Lancelot Gown in Black worn with our Linen Kirtle in Red and Linen Hood


Our Lancelot du Lac Cotehardie in Dark Red w/ Gold Sleeves and Black w/ Gold Sleeves worn with Silk Oval Veil in White and Yellow


Our Lancelot du Lac Cotehardie in Black w/ Gold Sleeves worn with our Silk Oval Veil in White and Yellow coordinating with our Men's Laced Cotehardie in Black w/ Gold Sleeves worn with a Burnt Orange Chaperone, Decorated Belt, Cotton Joined Hose in Gold, Ribbon Garters, and Turnshoes


Our Lancelot du Lac Cotehardie in Blue w/ Gold Sleeves worn with a Linen Hood in Soft Gold

 

Colors and Fabrics 

 

Note: Due to the difficulty of representing colors accurately on a variety of monitors we've included color descriptions along with our swatches. Please use both when deciding on what color to order. Also, despite how the colors may appear on your monitor the same color names in Wool, Silk and Linen are different and do not exactly coordinate.

 

Linen Colors: Soft Gold, Red, Blue, and Dark Green

 

Red -a true deep, red
Soft Gold -a muted yellow/gold
Bright Blue -a rich, bright blue
Dark Green -a deep forest green

 

Size Chart 

 

Size Bust Measurement Waist Measurement
2 32-36" / 81-91cm 26-30" / 66-76cm
3 36-40" / 91-102cm 32-36" / 81-91cm
4 44-48" / 112-121cm 38-42" / 96-106cm
5 48-52" / 122-132cm 44-48" / 112-121cm

Note: In our women's clothes we've abandoned 'standard', modern sizing because it is far from standard, and tends to cause more confusion than provide accurate information. So, please judge your size by your chest and waist measurements. We do not give hip measurements because the gown flares dramatically at the hip and is so generously sized there that fit is not an issue at that point. A range of fit is given for each size because the lacings and placket in the back start at the top and extend to below the hip providing flexibility within each size as well as a near perfect fit to each individual within that size range. The gowns run long with a small train so that you can wear them in the authentic fashion of the period - trailing along the ground or hem it to your desired length.

 

Historical Inspirations 

 

Drawing after 'Lancelot du Lac' et la quete du Graal circa 1385, manuscript 343 in the Bibliotethque National, Paris, France Drawing after the effigy of Catherine Beauchamp, Countess of Warwick, circa 1370-1375, St Mary's Church, Warwick, England Drawing after 'Lancelot du Lac' et la quete du Graal circa 1385, manuscript 343 in the Bibliotethque National, Paris, France
 
Drawing after 'Lancelot du Lac' et la quete du Graal circa 1385, manuscript 343 in the Bibliotethque National, Paris, France   Illustration from the Romance of Alexander, French, 1338-44, fol 59r in the British Museum

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