The round gown of the 1790s stands just before the complete renunciation of three-dimensional shaping and color in the First Empire, more or less imitating Greek sculpture bereft of polychromy (as it was often seen and envisioned in the eighteenth century). Delicate polychrome wool crewel embroidery saves this dress from the austerity of the later style and assures a date of about 1798; the piece fully anticipates the Empire style but retains one last vestige of rococo ornament and incident.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Our New Clothes: Acquisitions of the 1990s," April 6, 1999–August 22, 1999.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Ceaseless Century," September 9, 1998–November 29, 1998.