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World Fashion: Racinet’s Compendium c. 1878


Auguste Racinet was a French illustrator, famous for his detailed depictions of historical costumes. His polychromatic ornaments are also a thing to marvel, just take a look at these five motives from Persia, Byzantine, Medieval, Renaissance and 18th Century style:

His masterpiece, however, remains to be Le Costume Historiquean unprecendented attempt to illustrate the entire history of human dress. Published by Firmin Didot-et Cie, where Racinet had worked as an engraver and artistic director from 1869 to 1888, the series won him a membership to the Legion of Honor

The book contains nearly 500 plates, ranging from Roman Warriors to Pacific Islanders and the French nobility. The details are exquicit, as each piece shines not just because of its historical relevance but because of its plain beauty. Here are some fascinating pages from the book:


Original Source: Mashable


UX Designer and Anthropologist, hardcore gamer, obsessive reader and improvised artificer of crafts. I cheated on population genetics with graphic design and since that the three of us have been living happily ever after. I enjoy writing little pieces on practically anything that catches my eye, but I lean towards those occasions when art overlaps with science.

2 comments on “World Fashion: Racinet’s Compendium c. 1878
  1. bakabakadesign on said:

    My dad has this book! He occasionally allowed me to browse it when I was a kid. I bet he now uses it to get inspiration for his own work!


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    • yisela on said:

      Nice!! I can hardly imagine a more visually interesting book for a young kid. I’ve been thinking of acquiring this one, it looks collection-worthy ;)


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