Sheltering of Girls

Unmarried daughters were especially kept hidden from society. Noble girls in Venice were so well guarded and watched over by their fathers’ houses, that very often they did not see their closest relatives until they were married. The rare times they could go out into the city, to go to mass or other church services, the young noblewomen wore a white silk veil, which they called a “fazzuolo.” These veils were very wide and covered their face and breasts. They were allowed to wear few pearl ornaments and their over-gowns were a rustic shade or black made out of wool or a fabric of little value. When these girls are fully-grown, they dressed entirely in black and wore a veil of delicate silk that covered their entire face if they were unmarried. This sheltered method of bringing up girls was a remarkable tradition in Venice.

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