A Game of Billiards
Unknown, maker, Italy, The Veneto, Venice
This fan was originally dated to 1720-30 but the mantuas worn by the ladies would suggest the fan to be of slightly later date. The sticks and guards may be earlier.
mid 18th Century
Folding fan with double paper leaf, painted in bodycolour and gilt. Sticks of pierced and carved ivory; guards of carved ivory, the head strengthened with mother-of-pearl (17+2). Fan depicts a game of billiards.
Folding fan with double paper leaf, painted in bodycolour and gilt. Sticks of pierced and carved ivory; guards of carved ivory, the head strengthened with mother-of-pearl (17+2). Rivet set with clear paste. Front: Ladies and gentlemen in an outdoor setting with an ornamental building in the background. On the left, a lady curtseys to a gentleman who holds her right hand; in the middle, a lady holding a basket of flowers observes a gentleman presenting a posy to a lady seated beside a billiard table; on the right, a lady and gentleman are playing billiards. The ladies are wearing ornate mantuas. The upper edge has a border of pink, maroon and turquoise compartments painted in colours and gold with chinoiserie landscapes with flowers, oriental flowers and a fence, shells, and sprays of foliage. On the left side and lower edge there are narrow maroon borders with gilt ornament. Back: in the middle, a lady and gentleman are seated in a landscape. She has a book of music on her knee, and he holds a cane in his left hand. The upper edge has a border of compartments decorated with gold ornament on red, green, maroon grounds. Sticks: in the middle, a lady and gentleman are seated within a shaped cartouche with a diapered ground, framed by scrolls, surmounted by a bowl of fruit, and flanked by scrolling floral sprays. The reverse is undecorated. Guards: carved in low relief on a hatched ground, a bust, a sunflower, a peacock perching on a flower, a gentleman playing a viol and a shell. The reverse is undecorated.
carving; sticks and guards
setting (jewellery); rivet
painting; leaf; polychrome and gold
paper; leaf; double
ivory; sticks and guards
paste; rivet; clear
bodycolour; leaf; polychrome
Folding fan with double paper leaf, painted in bodycolour and gilt. Sticks of pierced and carved ivory; guards of carved ivory, the head strengthened with mother-of-pearl (17+2). Rivet set with clear paste
length, guards, 29.6, cm
width, whole, 45.0, cm
bought; 1985-01-28; Countess of Rosse, Anne
Colonel Leonard C. Messel (1872-1953); his daughter Anne, Countess of Rosse (1902-1992)
Messel, Leonard; owner
Countess of Rosse, Anne; owner
Purchased with a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and a gift from the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum.
old collection number; DR 27/356; Messel-Rosse Collection
Armstrong, Nancy. 1985. Fans from the Fitzwilliam. A Selection from the Messel-Rosse Collection.Cambridge (Cambs.): Fitzwilliam Museum Enterprises Ltdp. pl. 10
Biedronskiej-Slotowej, Beaty. 2001. Wachlarze Zachodu i Wschodu w zbioracg Nyzeyn Narodowego w Krakowie. Fans of the Occident and Orient in the Collection of the National Museum in Cracow.Cracow: p. 66
Cf. A fan with comparable sticks and painted top border, but a mythological subject on the leaf, attributed to England or the Netherlands, c.1720-30.
Object Number: M.1-1985
(record id: 117587; input: 2004-12-07; modified: 2017-01-04)