Rare Regency Era Dance Card Brise Fan


Rare Jane Austen / Regency Era brise dance card fan made of bone and cardboard sticks. The fan has its original stylus and silk ribbon.



Origin: France

Date: ca. 1825-1830

This Jane Austen / Regency Era brise fan is made to be used as dance card (éventail carnet de bal). Such fans are not very useful in moving air about for the purpose of cooling oneself, but were rather used to noted dance partners on the back by way of a small stylus. The stylus was concealed within the tip of the right guardstick. This fan was used at a ball (see the numbers of dances and corresponding initials of the lady’s dance partners).

This dance card fan is made of of carved bone guard sticks and white (now off-white/cream coloured in appearance) painted cardboard inner sticks. The tips of the blade are of Gothic cathédral shape that became increasingly fashionable on brise fans at that time. The front of the fan is decorated with gold painted flowers and scrolls, and steel sequins.
This small type of brise fan was referred to as an “imperceptible” in the early 19th century, because it could be easily concealed within a pocket or reticule.
Length: 7″ (17.5 cm) Width: 13.25″ (33.5 cm)

Condition: Very good condition with original ribbon (a rare occurrence) and minor wear and paint transfer on the tips of some sticks. Rubbed decoration on the guardsticks.