Dress-down Friday: Gabriele d’Annunzio

Today we take a quick flick through the racks of Gabriele d’Annunzio, the Italian writer and adventurer (and you need only look at yesterday‘s subject to realise what a broad field of endeavour the conjunction of those two job descriptions can embrace).

Now, I would be the last person to promote d’Annunzio as an all-round model of life and how to live it. If, say, a well-meaning friend invited you to a talk on “D’Annunzian Ethics in Wartime”, I would advise you to beg off. Similarly, if you’re looking for tips on minimalist interiors, d’Annunzio can’t really help you out.


The guy sure could dress. Few were as qualified to bear the mantle of Dandyism into the 20th century as the charismatic Italian, whose inherited wealth, assumed aristocracy and self-generated hauteur were reflected in his meticulously curated wardrobe. Paradoxically, the excess d’Annunzio exhibited in most fields of activity – war, nationalism, seduction, decoration, bravado – issued from a compact package, adorned with restraint. The raw material might not have been as impressive as that boasted by his friend, the tall, slim, handsome Robert de Montesquiou, but from head to toe d’Annunzio made the most of what he had.

Judge for yourself:

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  1. Linda Hollander

    What a guy…can you imagine him when he was with Casati? What a couple. Of course she would likely be wearing…well…nothing.

    GOD, I wish I could just go there for a little while, be a guest in the 19th century. I say this all the time, but I am quite sure I would be very glad to return to 2012. I’m so curious about the smells, and the way the clothes would alter my way of being in the world, and how the time goes by, and, and, and.

    Have you read any of his poems recently? Not bad, but I write this as one who likes Montesquiou, so…I think these poets are terribly underrated, especially Anna de Noailles, who was REALLY fabulous.

    But I digress.

    great post.


  2. Has there ever been a more well-shaped skull?

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