Rare Jane Austen Era Brise Fan in Original Box


Rare early Jane Austen Era brise fan made of carved and pierced ivory sticks in its original STUNT (London) labelled cardboard box.



Origin: France, England or China

Date: ca. 1798-1800

This Jane Austen Era brise fan is early for its type and it is considerably larger than the slightly later examples of the first decade of the 19th century. The fan is either of Chinese origin and specifically designed for European tastes, or a European attempt to copy Chinese brise fans – it represents a fusion of European and Chinese fan design.
The fan is made of carved and pierced ivory sticks. The sticks is profusely pierced showing a floral design on a diamond patterned background.
Brise fans of this type were referred to as “imperceptibles” in the early 19th century, because they could be easily concealed within a pocket or reticule. This fan, however, is a good bit larger than the usual “imperceptible”
The fan comes in its original cardboard box. The box bears the label for the London fan makers (Mary and Fanny) STUNT. The label on the box is identical to a “Stunt” trade card in the Banks Collection (D,2.787) of the British Museum. Mary Stunt was an apprentice of the well-known London fan maker Robert Clarke and took over Edward Sudlow’s premises at 191, The Strand in ca. 1798. She was admitted to the Worshipful Company of Fan Makers in 1803. Mary Stunt would have sold her own fans, as well as exported fans.
Length: 7.5″ (19 cm) Width: 13.75″ (35 cm)

Condition: Excellent. Ribbon properly replaced with the correct silk. The box is also excellent.