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Friday, 24 July 2015


The common people of Rome wore a cloak with an attached hood.

Some kind of hood continued to be worn outdoors by both men and women throughout the early Middle Ages. If it was separate from the cloak or cape it was called a chaperon. If it was attached, it was a cowl, or capuchon.

The hooded cloak came into widespread use during the early part of the last millennium. It was worn by clerics, religious pilgrims, and shepherds.

With the emergence of the friars in the twelfth century, Francis of Assisi and Dominic devised a tunic that had an extensive hood attached. Friars, when turning to prayer would simply pull their hood over their heads. This was their withdrawal from the immediacy of the world within which they ministered.

The academic hood can be traced to a shoulder covering worn in the Middle Ages by begging Friars. Apart from keeping the itinerant monks warm on cold days, it served as a cloth receptacle and carrier bag for gifts presented to them by the pious.

The hood achieved its greatest popularity in the 15th century, when it was lengthened into the liripipe --a long, narrow band at the crown that almost touched the ground.

In about 1500, women began to wear hoods, highly jeweled and embroidered. Some form of hood or lace cap continued to be worn until the late 1700s.

Today, fashion hoods are generally soft headcoverings which form part of robbing a larger garment, such as an overcoat, shirt or cloak; an exception is a rain hood which is not part of a larger garment.

Source Compton's Interactive Encyclopedia © 1998 The Learning Company, Inc.

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