- Museum number
- Object: Les Incroyables
Satire on fashion: two Incroyables eye each other, one through a monocle. December 1796
Stipple printed in colours
- Production date
Height: 306 millimetres
Width: 355 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- Announced in the 'Journal de Paris' for 31 December 1796 with a pendant, 'Les Merveilleuses', priced at 3 livres or 6 livres in colour. These two prints stand at the beginning of the series by Vernet. In its first state (see IFF) the plate has two lines of dialogue, showing that there was a political sub-text, since one is meant to be a returning emigré and the other his former valet. These were removed when they lost their political relevance, and the print reverted to a plain fashion satire.
See also a British copy of the print by F Sansom, c. 1797, reg. no.1861,1012.372.
The years of the Directory saw the return of fashionable life in Paris and of extravagant display in dress which was much satirised. 'Les incroyables' were young men noted for their long hair, wide collars, culottes and pointed shoes, all of which implied rejection of the austere values of Robespierre and of the spirit of l'an II. Their female counterparts were the 'merveilleuses', and they tended to wear the long white gowns familiar from Jacques-Louis David's paintings. In political terms they can be identified with the 'jeunesse dorée', counter-revolutionary thugs who sought to destroy the symbolic remains of the previous regime and attacked those associated with it.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1989 May-Sep, BM, Shadow of the Guillotine: Britain and French Revolution
1990 Jan-Mar, Manchester, Whitworth AG, Britain and French Revolution
1990 Jun-Sep, Vizille, Mus Rev/Francaise, Britain and French Revolution
2002 Jan-Mar, Newcastle, Hatton Gall, Followers of Fashion
2002 Jun-Jul, Belfast, Ulster Mus, Followers of Fashion
2002 Aug-Sep, Nottingham, Djanogly AG, Followers of Fashion
2002/3 Dec-Feb, Brighton MAG, Followers of Fashion
2003 Apr-Jun, Braintree District Mus, Followers of Fashion
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number