Antique Nineteenth Century French Ecclesiastic Red Silk Damask Chasuble Cope

This priest's cope hood with central Christogram JHS, is a magnificent vision, embellished with silver over gold metallic braid, gilt sequins and gilt bouillon. It would have attached to a long cloak and would have been worn in processions and sacraments outside of mass. It originates from Normandy and dates circa 1890.

The face is of crimson damask. It has a large two toned floral pattern. The central Christogram is very large measuring 8 1/2" in diameter. The initials are done in stumpwork which uses a cotton or wool padding which is cut in the letter shape. This serves as the working ground for the meticulously sewn and very fine metallic threads.
Rays formed by gilt fabric are embellished with large gilt paillettes or sequins. These are hand sewn with coiling gilt metallic thread (some missing sequins at the 11 o'clock position). There is a gilt metallic twisted braid border around each ray.

The edges are framed with a wide (1 1/8") braid. The braid has a luminous appearance which is achieved by a base of gold with silver metallic threads on top. The thick fringe is 3" wide. The original silvered metal ornament and chain survive at the left side. The original clasp has a pretty rosette form with cutwork in the form of a stylized fleur de lis and leaves. The chain is original. The hooking clasp on the right side is not present. There are raw edges at the top back where the cope was sewn to the cloak. It does need to be ironed, we chose not to do this as it will be folded again when shipped.

The back is lined with plain rose red cotton (sun fading in spots). There is an inventory ticket which is hand sewn at the top of the backing. It measures: 25" x 22" including fringe. It is in good antique condition (some fading to back and a few missing sequins as mentioned above).

It is a marvelous antique textile of a size which would serve as an exquisite backdrop for a religious collection (we depict this in our last picture...... the grouping is for reference only, we sell the cope hood alone with this listing.

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