Up for Sale is a truly marvelous Solid Antique Bronze Moretta Mask
Solid bronze cast mask of a woman’s face, wearing a headdress crowned by an owl with outstretched wings.
Attributed as an Italian Moretta mask.
Measures 5.5” W x 8” H x 1.5” D
Please review all pictures as they are part of the description
Shipped via USPS Priority or Ground Mail
We entertain fair offers and guarantee prompt shipping
The Moretta was a mask used in Venice for a long time. It also appears in some non-venetian portraits. It is a black oval mask that covers the eyes and the moutch, but leaves empty the edge of the face, supposed to be very light in color, and so achieving a striking contrast.
It was held on with a button to be kept between the lips and didn’t allow the wearer to speak, and this gave the mask the second name of “la servetta muta”, the mute servant (referring to a female one, servetta means little girl servant, but it doesn’t sound appelaling). While moretta means “little black one”.
It is said that it was worn by women only, but that’s not true. It was worn with women’s clothes, so even a man could conceal himself under female clothes and this mask, and do whatever pleased him, his voice concealed by the mask too. The fact that it inhibited talking made it the most identity-concealing mask of all, and it had quite a controversial reputation.
You can find the Moretta in real masks shops in Venice, even order it online. It’s not a mask that is made in sprayed resin, like the ones you find in the cheap Chinese stores, or Italian ones selling Chinese stuff. You need to go to some authentic mask shop.
Also, it is polished in black, no black velvet. Both options were used, there are paintings where you can clearly see the shiny surface.
Solid Antique Bronze Moretta Mask