Kronprinz Friedrich of Prussia and his sister Wilhelmine

by Antoine Pesne, 1714


Children were dressed like small adults, possibly with an apron to protect their clothes and ribbons attached (as a leash) to the back of the shoulders of the dress for the smallest ones.

Like all small boys before the mid 19th century, the crown prince wears a girls' dress. He was 2-3 years old when this picture was painted. The first breeches came later, were first put on with a certain ceremony and considered the first step on the way to adulthood. I have not yet found out at what age that took place.

Wilhelmine wears a dress consisting of a stiff bodice and separate skirt similar to that of the Princess Elector of Bavaria and other German noblewomen of the time. For want of an "official" name, I have termed it "Robe à l'Allemande".