The secret language of fans in Spain
During the 19th century, when single ladies went out dancing, they were not allowed to meet boys on their own. They would be accompanied by a chaperone who would stay by their side and observe their behavior. In order to communicate with the young men, a secret language was started, using their fans.
Depending on how they held or moved their fans, the boys would understand what they were trying to say yet the chaperones didn't.
Here are a few examples of how a fan might be used and what it meant: