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Thursday, 21 July 2016


The Ancient Chinese only wore white clothes and hats when they mourned for the dead.

The custom of wearing unadorned black clothing for mourning dates back at least to the Roman Empire, when the toga pulla, made of dark-colored wool, was worn during mourning.

Anne Boleyn wore yellow to celebrate the death of King Henry VIII's first wife Catherine of Aragon. Her choice of clothing was no less than a calculated insult to the memory of the woman she had supplanted.

Mary Queen of Scots wore white, the traditional mourning color of the French Royal Family, following the deaths of her father-in-law, mother, and first husband Francis II of France.

Mary, Queen of Scots, in deuil blanc c. 1559 following the deaths of her father-in-law, mother, and first husband Francis II .

Formal mourning culminated during the reign of Queen Victoria, whose long and conspicuous grief over the death of her husband, Prince Albert, had much to do with it. For three years after Albert’s death the Queen refused to appear in public, becoming known as ‘the widow of Windsor’. She wore only black for the rest of her reign.

Queen Victoria had a handkerchief embroidered with teardrops for use in mourning and refused to wear any other color gloves than black.

The traditional black band on a Panama hat was added in mourning for Queen Victoria. It's been retained ever since.

The five daughters of Prince Albert wore black dresses and posed for a portrait with his statue following his death in 1861

In India, blue is thought to bring bad luck and is associated with mourning. In Iran, blue is the color of heaven and spirituality and is also used for mourning.

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