Stunning and beautiful design. The shawl is very finely woven and very light. I feel fairly sure cashmere has been used.
Frederic Hebert set up a shawl manufacturing business in 1815 and was an innovator in new methods of shawl production. He promoted the Jacquard attachment, twill-tapestry weaving with his shawls imitating the Indian style. Hebert formed a new company Frederic Hebert & Cie with his son Emile in February 1851, at 13 rue du Mail, Paris. Hebert's design studio was run in the 1850s and 60s by Monsieur Claverie. In 1852 they registered the trademark H. Cashemire Pur . The H appears under a mehrab or prayer arch. By the 1860s only the C & P remain with the small os under a curving line. Frederic retired in 1855 and Emile took over the firm, around the time this shawl was woven. With Emile's knighthood of the Legion of Honour in 1863, the firm produced a gold stamp for the back of their shawls with Seule medaille d'Honneur, 1840 EFH 1863. The dates refer to when the father and son were awarded the honour. The Heberts business closed in 1867 but are regarded as among the top four Parisian shawl makers.
The large black central Eastern medallion woven in white with H and caligraphy, surrounded by bands of black arches and interlocking foliage ribbons culminating in curls, each end surrounded by a pair of huge skinny elongated pines, a border of mehrabs containing four narrow pines and minute flowers surrounding the shawl, the outer edgewith a band of stylised formal foliage, epaulette borders to both ends, all tightly woven in wool and silk, in scarlet, burgandy, pink, orange, mid-green, deep turquoise blue, ivory, ochre and black, the back with a half moon stamped in gold lettering, with Seule Medaille d'Honneur, EFH,1840-1863.
11ft 10 in x 5 ft; 3.6 x 1.50 m
Excellent. I can only show half the shawl in a photo, because my studio wall is not large enough. Request a photo of the other half and more photos.
Cashmere. A French Passion 1800-1880 Monique Levi-Strauss p 197-239.
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