The 19th century gentlemen’ accessories and jewellery (video)

Lorgnette his captious he has got,
Directs it constantly, each minute
At her, who by her own image
Forgotten features can remind.

“Eugene Onegin” Alexander Pushkin

Despite the prodigious achievements of scientific progress, the 19th century was the time of global uncertainty. The old European nobility confronted new industrial elite in the secular salons of that dynamic era. Their active engagement and even confrontation called into question the very foundations of the customary lifestyle pattern of society. Moreover, this mutual influence became the driving power of revolutionary changes that affected all aspects of everyday routine. The mirror of these changes, accurately reflecting the slightest transformations of the 19th-century etiquette and fashion, was decorative art and jewellery.

By the 1850s, the word 'gentleman', previously used exclusively as a title for English nobility, denoted particular amenity. Those cultural values were regulated by educational literature and proliferated by the urban “gentlemental communities" in all European states. The perception of the world and costume was based on the principle of "great refusal" -- dark-coloured three-piece suits: trousers, waistcoats and tailcoats came into fashion. The austerity of the attire was matched by the laconism of jewellery items. With such a strict "dress code" and code of behavior, the most essential feature in the image of a gentleman was graceful modesty that was achieved by the art of an iconic and ingenious detail. Certainly, the items on display in the recently opened 'Order of Things' themed exhibition can deservedly be considered the kind of such striking details.

You can find out more about the 19th century gentlemen' accessories by watching the video clip available in the museum Video Archive.
A closer look at the items presented at the exhibition "The Order of Things" is in the album posted in the museum Photo Gallery.
You can sign up for a guided tour on the museum website in the Contact us section.