What the heck are these things called?

219 wc

Originally posted on my writing blog which was active from 2010 to 2018.

Consider this contemporary engraving of a woman by Wenceslaus Hollar,  from around the mid-1700s:

From here, btw.

Sadly, I am a complete moron when it comes to clothing. If I look at that picture, I see a woman wearing an old-timey dress thingy, with a hat thingy on her head. But for some reason, that description wouldn’t go over very well in a published work of fiction. So, what the heck are these things called?


  1. I’m calling this a bonnet, whether it is or not.

  2. Is this a corsage? Is this a prom? I guess it’s a bow (cloth, not composite), but shouldn’t it have a better name?

  3. I’d be tempted to call this a shawl, but it appears to be attached.

  4. It sort of looks like a cuff, but there’s probably a more frilly name for this, probably made from the same material as part 3.

  5. This is the “dress.” I guess. I would presume this is the basic color of the dress. (Probably black in this Puritan-ish example.)

  6. What is this? It’s like a really long bib.

Oh, and I see I forgot to mark the white part between 1 and 2 covering the neck, which is yet another piece. I’ll call that 1.5.

These are the sorts of challenges that prevent people from becoming full-time authors.

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