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Fête Galante: M.28-1985

Object information

Current Location: In storage


Fête Galante


Maker: Unknown




Folding fan, double leaf paper, painted in bodycolour and watercolour and gilded. Sticks and guards of ivory inlaid with engraved mother-of-pearl, marbled and coloured lacquer and silver piqué. A Fête Galante scene.

Double leaf paper, painted in bodycolour and watercolour and gilded. Sticks of ivory inlaid with engraved mother-of-pearl, marbled and coloured lacquer and silver piqué. Guards of ivory and applied tortoiseshell inlaid with mother-of-pearl, coloured and marbled lacquer and silver piqué, thumb guard of mother-of-pearl (16+2). Rivet of mother-of-pearl. Front: Fête galante, with twelve people on a pavement with water in the foreground. On the left, two boys with baskets of grapes and fruit are serving a table; two women are sitting in the foreground, one with her arm on a cushion, the other courted by a kneeling young man. In the centre there is a sitting man and men playing a cello and a hurdy-gurdy. On the right, a drunken young man is courting a woman with a bottle in his right hand; between them in the background, a couple is sitting on the edge of the pedestal. In the background a naked statue standing on one leg with a drape over his hand, a fountain and a tree can all be distinguished. In the right corner, there is an urn on a pedestal with a satyr mask spouting water; in front of the sitting woman on the left there is an open chest with ribbons and to her left a statue of a bird is spouting water from its beak. The top is bordered with swags in different colours and decorated with gold. The top edging is of gold foil; the lower edging is painted in gold. Back: On a white background and a green floor with three trees, the right scene from the front leaf with the drunken man courting a woman is copied. The top border is decorated with similar swags. Sticks: in the centre a cartouche showing a couple, a winged child with a tail and a lion flanked by two sitting eagles is worked. On the right, the stick between the lion and the eagle is missing. The first four sticks on either side form cartouches, a bowl surrounded by flowers and two birds, but on the left side the second stick is missing; on top of each stick there is a shell. The reverse of the sticks is decorated in the same way. Guards: both guards are decorated in the same way: Panels of mother of pearl with lacquer insertions and a little of mother-of-pearl near the top


History note: Colonel Leonard C. Messel (1872-1953); his daughter Anne, Countess of Rosse (1902-1992)

Legal notes

Purchased with a grant from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and a gift from the Friends of the Fitzwilliam.

Acquisition and important dates

Method of acquisition: Bought (1985-01-28) by Countess of Rosse, Anne


18th Century, second quarter#
Circa 1720 - 1730

People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Leaf composed of paper watercolour bodycolour
Sticks+guards+rivet composed of mother-of-pearl
Sticks+guards composed of silver ivory
Guards Length 29.1 cm

References and bibliographic entries

Related exhibitions

Identification numbers

Accession number: M.28-1985
Primary reference Number: 117614
Old catalogue number: DR 22/275
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Wednesday 15 July 2020 Last processed: Thursday 7 December 2023

Associated departments & institutions

Owner or interested party: The Fitzwilliam Museum
Associated department: Applied Arts

Citation for print

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The Fitzwilliam Museum (2024) "Fête Galante" Web page available at: Accessed: 2024-03-04 06:01:19

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{{cite web|url= |title=Fête Galante |author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2024-03-04 06:01:19|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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