strict mourning

A Victorian ear trumpet for use during periods of mourning. Before the invention of modern hearing aids, ear trumpets were used by people who suffered from hearing loss. Normal ear trumpets were made of metal, but strict rules of mourning prohibited clothes or accessories which were deemed too gaudy. A metal ear-trumpet would be shiny and attract attention. This one has been specially made with black silk covering and lace details to suit the sombre occasion.

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During the Victorian Era, woman would wear these mourning pins. Because of strict mourning rituals, a woman couldn’t wear or display anything bright or flashy, even shiny pins keeping her clothing together. So women would use these mourning pins to button their clothes. The pins resemble thin black nails.