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Marie of Edinburgh in her first Romanian peasant costume (Diana Mandache Collection)

Princess Marie in her first Romanian peasant costume (from the Arges ethnographic region) given to her by King Carol as a wedding gift. Romanian peasant dress was introduced for court festivities and ceremonies by Queen Elizabeth. The peasants were identified in the national ideology as the quintessential Romanians and many among the Romanian elite started in that period to follow the court’s example and express their national identity by wearing peasant attire when participating at national events and other festivities. Princess Marie from the very beginning wrote to her mother: «The other day there was a charity ball here, and everybody came in Romanian costumes, it looked so pretty».

[see D.M, 'Marie of Romania. Images of a Queen', RRB, 2007, p.16]

The picture frame illustrated above is on the same pattern as the one described in the precedent article, as Brancovan church portals. The Byzantine arch is adorned with geometrised Georgian and Armenian latticework motifs inspired from the Curtea de Arges cathedral, supported by two short columns decorated with the rope symbol (they can also be interpreted as a mixed representation of the ethnographic motif of the rope and Solomonic column shaft). The pediment of the arch contain two beautiful six ray solar discs inspired from the Indo-European ethnography. Fittingly the photograph hosted by this frame is that of Crown Princess Marie in the 1890s, in a Romanian peasant costume. V. Mandache.

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