1. "The Masquerade on Monday night was very numerously attended, but there was no great discrimination displayed either with respect to the selection or dress of the Characters; the best were men in the female garb. The representation of Aunt Deborah, taken from Charles’s picture in the School for Scandal, was very appropriate, and had whimsical effect. Two or three Billingsgates, and an Old Cloathsman of the Tribe of Judah, were happily delineated, but others were, with very few exceptions, composed of noisy Watchmen, Maids of all Work, and the customary et cæteras of vulgar ribaldry."
(source: The London Times, May 23, 1798.)

    "The Masquerade on Monday night was very numerously attended, but there was no great discrimination displayed either with respect to the selection or dress of the Characters; the best were men in the female garb. The representation of Aunt Deborah, taken from Charles’s picture in the School for Scandal, was very appropriate, and had whimsical effect. Two or three Billingsgates, and an Old Cloathsman of the Tribe of Judah, were happily delineated, but others were, with very few exceptions, composed of noisy Watchmen, Maids of all Work, and the customary et cæteras of vulgar ribaldry."

    (source: The London Times, May 23, 1798.)

  2. The dressing up of children in elaborate costumes continued full steam as the 18th century closed.
Nikolai Argunov painted the son of a Russian nobleman dressed as Cupid circa 1790.

    The dressing up of children in elaborate costumes continued full steam as the 18th century closed.

    Nikolai Argunov painted the son of a Russian nobleman dressed as Cupid circa 1790.

  3. A woman in a Turkish themed fancy dress costume, painted by Jean-Baptiste Greuze circa 1790.

    A woman in a Turkish themed fancy dress costume, painted by Jean-Baptiste Greuze circa 1790.

  4. By the 1780s masquerades had become an integral part of the social calender for London high society.
Interest in the goings on at these parties was so great that newspapers would often print a list of the characters the aristocracy had chosen to portray.
This particular list was published in the London Times on February 5, 1788, the day after the Pantheon Masquerade at the King’s Theatre.

    By the 1780s masquerades had become an integral part of the social calender for London high society.

    Interest in the goings on at these parties was so great that newspapers would often print a list of the characters the aristocracy had chosen to portray.

    This particular list was published in the London Times on February 5, 1788, the day after the Pantheon Masquerade at the King’s Theatre.

  5. A 1771 engraving of a masquerade at the Pantheon, Oxford Street in London shows how intricate costumes had become by the late 18th century. Grotesque masks and large props were the norm and characters continued to become increasingly elaborate and bizarre.

    A 1771 engraving of a masquerade at the Pantheon, Oxford Street in London shows how intricate costumes had become by the late 18th century. Grotesque masks and large props were the norm and characters continued to become increasingly elaborate and bizarre.

  6. A 1771 engraving from Oxford Magazine depicts the “Remarkable Characters at Mrs. Cornely’s Masquerade”.

    A 1771 engraving from Oxford Magazine depicts the “Remarkable Characters at Mrs. Cornely’s Masquerade”.

  7. Sir Joshua Reynolds painted Mrs. Trecothick in ‘Turkish’ masquerade dress in 1770-1771.

    Sir Joshua Reynolds painted Mrs. Trecothick in ‘Turkish’ masquerade dress in 1770-1771.

  8. A print from The Gentleman’s Magazine shows the wide variety of costumes and characters in attendance at a masquerade in London in 1768.

    A print from The Gentleman’s Magazine shows the wide variety of costumes and characters in attendance at a masquerade in London in 1768.

  9. Dressing up children in elaborate and cutesy costumes was already a pastime of the rich and powerful by the mid-18th century.
Here Queen Charlotte of Britain poses with her two eldest sons, the future George IV and Frederick, Duke of York, who are dressed as a roman soldier and an Ottoman nobleman. The portrait was painted by Johann Zoffany in 1765.

    Dressing up children in elaborate and cutesy costumes was already a pastime of the rich and powerful by the mid-18th century.

    Here Queen Charlotte of Britain poses with her two eldest sons, the future George IV and Frederick, Duke of York, who are dressed as a roman soldier and an Ottoman nobleman. The portrait was painted by Johann Zoffany in 1765.

  10. Maria Theresa of Austria was painted wearing “Oriental” costume for a masquerade in 1744 by Martin van Meytens.

    Maria Theresa of Austria was painted wearing “Oriental” costume for a masquerade in 1744 by Martin van Meytens.