Sunday, July 26, 2015

Photos of 19C African American women + the secret courting language of the parasol


It is said that Victorian ladies understood the courting language of the parasol & used it to their advantage.  This unproven theory only works, if Victorian gentlemen also understood the parasol signals.


Alvan S. Harper (1847-1911) Tallahassee c 1884 State Library and Archives of Florida

If the lady touched the tip of the parasol to her lip, it meant, “Do you love me?” But lowering the parasol quickly meant, “Please leave.”


Alvan S. Harper (1847-1911) Tallahassee c 1884 State Library and Archives of Florida

Twirling the parasol on the right shoulder meant the lady was available.


Alvan S. Harper (1847-1911) Tallahassee c 1884 State Library and Archives of Florida

Holding the parasol vertically in the left hand, left the right hand free to greet a potential friend or lover.


Alvan S. Harper (1847-1911) Tallahassee c 1884 State Library and Archives of Florida

Holding the parasol folded in the left hand indicated that the lady wanted to speak to an admirer.


Alvan S. Harper (1847-1911) Tallahassee c 1884 State Library and Archives of Florida

Collapsing her parasol & then holding it in the middle with her right hand with the tip pointing in the direction she was walking, was in invitation for a gentleman to follow.


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