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Folding fan: M.298-1985

Object information


Unknown (Maker)


Folding fan, double paper leaf painted in polychrome and gilt; sticks and guards of pierced, shaped, gilt and painted ivory. The latter carved and backed with mother-of-pearl; rivet with two cut red paste heads. The cream leaf is decorated with flowers, love trophies and scrolls, and with one large and two small shaped panels separated by two narrow rectangular panels. The central panel is decorated with two boys and two girls in a landscape, the right panel with a girl seated in a landscape, and the left panel with a boy seated in a landscape. The two rectangular panels are decorated with a small figure of a girl in a landscape, and a small figure of a man in a landscape. On the back there is a landscape with a border of stylized flowers and foliage on the left, top and right sides. The sticks are decorated with chinoiserie figures in panels with gilt edges. The sticks are carved with a Chinese figure and scrolls at the top and with flowers below.


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 Museum

Acquisition and important dates

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


Third quarter of 18th century
Production date: circa AD/CE 1760


The front is painted in Rococo style. The sticks and guards are decorated with chinoiserie figures and flowers. On the back is a landscape with borders of flowers and foliage. The whole fan is in exceptionally good condition.

School or Style


People, subjects and objects depicted

Components of the work

Leaf: composed of paper gilt paint Guards: composed of mother-of-pearl Length 27 cm
Sticks+guards: composed of ivory

References and bibliographic entries

Identification numbers

Accession number: M.298-1985
Primary reference Number: 117883
Old catalogue number: DR 21/269
Stable URI

Audit data

Created: Saturday 6 August 2011 Updated: Monday 22 November 2021 Last processed: Monday 22 November 2021

Associated departments & institutions

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

Citation for print

This record can be cited in the Harvard Bibliographic style using the text below:

The Fitzwilliam Museum (2020) "Folding fan" Web page available at: Accessed: 2021-11-29 15:53:14

Citation for Wikipedia

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{{cite web|url=|title=Folding fan|author=The Fitzwilliam Museum|accessdate=2021-11-29 15:53:14|publisher=The University of Cambridge}}

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