Maidens Speed-Skate, 1809

Women racing on ice skates in 1809.
‘At a women’s skating race in Leeuwarden [the Netherlands] in 1809, the crowd watched sixty-four unmarried women vie for a gold cap-brooch. The winner was Houkje Gerrits Bouma. For greater ease, many had thrown off their cloaks. Baur painted the finalists with bare arms, a jettisoned cloak on the ice. It left little to men’s imagination and caused an outcry; therefore it was the last women’s race for many years.’


Image: Nicolaas Baur (Dutch, 1767-1820)
‘Women’s Skating Competition on the Stadsgracht in Leeuwarden, 21 January 1809’
Rijks Museum via Wikimedia Commons

This is the ninth in an occasional series of posts on ice-skating.
Click here to go to the first post.

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