Medieval Mens Clothing

Medieval men’s clothing was designed to reflect the class and social standing of men and thus it was different for people of different social classes. For instance, medieval men’s clothing reserved for the nobility was forbidden to the common people. The clothes also underwent several changes during different eras in the medieval times.

Medieval Men’s Clothing History

During the early medieval times, various traditional styles in medieval men’s clothing were used. This included trousers which were worn under a short tunic and sometimes used with a small cloak. Leggings were also traditionally used and worn in pairs. During the middle and late medieval times, medieval men’s clothing also underwent the same changes that women’s clothing did. Clothes became better fitting and use of lavish garments became increasingly common.

Medieval Mens Clothing

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Medieval Men’s Clothing and sumptuary laws

Just like medieval women’s clothing, the Sumptuary Laws restricted the lower classes from wearing the same clothes as nobility. Clothes became a symbol of status and social standing and certain materials and styles were exclusively reserved for the nobility. According to these laws, colour of purple, cloth of gold tissue, and fur of sables were reserved only for the royal family.

Types of popular Medieval Men’s Clothing

Various types of medieval men’s clothing gained popularity during different eras of medieval times. During the early medieval times, there was not much distinction between the clothes of nobility and the common people. During the middle medieval times, shortened tunics gained popularity while cloaks and trousers continued to be used. During the late medieval times, medieval men’s clothing styles increasingly included slit up front, sleeves, and girdles.

    • Medieval men’s clothing was designed to show the differences between medieval social classes
    • Early medieval men’s clothing was quite basic and materials used were coarse and uncomfortable
    • Medieval nobility and royalty clothing was superior to the clothing of peasants and commoners
    • Sumptuary laws were introduced which controlled the clothing that people could wear
    • People of lower classes were not allowed to wear clothes similar to that of the Royals under Sumptuary laws
    • The sumptuary laws made it illegal for low class people to wear the colours of the King

Fashionable Medieval Men’s Clothing

Colour had a central significance in the styles of medieval men’s clothing. For instance, gold colour represented virtue and prestige and purple colour stood for majesty. During the Elizabethan Era, styles also reflected social standing. Important components of style of medieval men’s clothing during the late medieval times included a knee length and close-fitting gipon, cote-hardie with elaborate sleeves, and a pointed cowl in place of traditional hoods.

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Men’s Clothing for Peasants

The Sumptuary Laws had maintained a clear distinction between medieval men’s clothing for peasants and nobility. Peasants usually wore uncomfortable coarse clothes made of sheepskin or wool. The blouse of cloth or skin was fastened at the waist and overcoat of thick wool was also used. Peasants also used short woolen trousers and large boots.

Men’s Clothing for Nobility

Various fashions and styles prevailed in medieval men’s clothing for the nobility. During early medieval times, classical styles from the Roman and Greece era dominated medieval fashion. During the middle and late medieval times, however, class consciousness began to be reflected in clothing. During this era, precious stones as well as gold and silver became to be increasingly used in medieval men’s clothing for the nobility.

Medieval men’s Clothing Summary

Medieval men’s clothing, just like women’s clothing, underwent changes during different eras of the medieval times. Clothes were relatively simple during the early medieval times but became elaborately designed and lavish during the middle and late medieval times. Strict distinction was also maintained between medieval men’s clothing for nobility and peasants.

      • The colours of medieval men’s clothing and medieval clothing in general had different meanings
      • Anyone wearing gold men’s clothing colours was thought to be wealthy and virtuous in medieval times
      • The colour purple was designated as Royal colours during certain medieval periods and stood for majesty
      • The sumptuary laws helped identify different classes of people within a medieval society
      • Every social ranking such as peasants, nobles, royalty in medieval times wore different types of clothing

We hope you found this article medieval men’s clothing factual and informative if you like to learn more about other medieval clothing as well as men’s medieval clothing please look at the articles listed at the bottom of this medieval men’s clothing page which will take you directly to some interesting medieval clothing pages.