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Dressing the Hands

During the 18th century there were two different ways of dressing the hands: in gloves, and in a type of mitten that left the fingers uncovered. They could be of very fine kid, silk, or knitted, and the backs were sometimes embroidered with flower or exotic bird motifs. The quality of the kid and the delicacy of the essences used to perfume them made them a coveted gift item in European courts. The fan, typically associated with the classic figure of the maja. although in more general use, completed the adornment of the feminine hand.