So I was attempting to read Les Liaisons dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos. And I came across this passage in the first paragraph:

J’ai pourtant vu plus de parures dans cette seule journée que dans les quatre ans que nous avons passés ensemble, & je crois que la superbe Tanville aura plus de chagrin à ma première visite, où je compte bien la demander, qu’elle n’a cru nous en faire toutes les fois qu’elle est venue nous voir dans son in fiocchi.

I understand the passage to mean something along the lines of:

I had yet seen more finery in this day alone than the four years that we had spent together, and I believe that the suburb Tanville will be more upset at my first visit, when I will ask for her, then she had ever thought to be to us, when she used to come see us in in fiocchi.

I looked up the italian meaning, and according to the sources I found it means "flakes" like for cereal. Or "Ribbons". I don't understand what this could mean in context?

2 Answers 2


"Être in fiocchi" is an expression meaning, "Être en grand costume" (similar to, in ceremonial dress).

Edit: The 'definition' of the term is

être en costume d'apparat, porter tous ses atours

"Costume d'apparat" implies "ceremonial dress", while "porter tous ses atours" is "in full finery".

(credits to jlliagre)


The young lady speaking in letter was living in a convent, I believe, and would perhaps be wearing some sort of garment for that reason. Thus they used term you asked about.... ?

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.