|Baton Fan with Blackamoor Finials|
French Leaf with German Stick and Guards, 1750
Given to Queen Victoria from Prince Albert, 1840
This an all images:
The Royal Collection
Image Courtesy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Of the four, one is especially interesting. This unusual fan is called a “baton fan” because, when closed, it takes on a cylindrical shape as opposed to the flatter shape of most fans. The sticks and guards are German in origin.
Created in 1750, the fan guards end in delicately carved, Moorish-inspred, figural heads—each with carefully pierced ears from which gold earrings hang. The fan leaf was painted in France and depicts a romantic, courting scene which the prince found especially appropriate for the occasion. The reverse depicts a landscape scene of a folly upon a lake.
On February 9, 1840, upon receiving these gifts, and a few others, Queen Victoria recorded her enthusiasm in her journal. And, look! Thanks to the very agreeable people at the Royal Collection, I've a photo of the very page upon which Her Majesty wrote of this fan, over one hundred sixty years ago! Wonderful!