This photo is of a mask, a special Venetian mask made in the style of those worn by Italian jesters.
The use of masks during the life of the Venetian Republic remains one of mankind's notably eccentric practices. Indeed, masks have been worn in cultures throughout the world for thousands of years, but perhaps never with such fervent pageantry as in Venice.
Masks served an important social purpose of keeping every citizen on an equal playing field. Masked, a servant could be mistaken for a nobleman - or vice versa. State inquisitors and spies could question citizens without fear of their true identity being discovered (and citizens could answer without fear of retribution). The morale of the people was maintained through the use of masks - for with no faces, everyone had voices.
I thought you would like to see what the original mask looks like:
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