In the 9th,10th and part of the 11th centuries the Western version of Byzantine stylesevolved by the Teutons and Franks continued to be worn in the costume ofBritain. Before
II. 1. EarlyWestern European. Six Figures
Hair:(a) and (b), a Celt and a Gaul of very early times, have long, thick hairtouching the shoulders,
(b) shows unparted locks on the forehead and bothhave long moustaches, (c) is Frankish, also of primi tive times. He has theback of his head shaved, with a tress knotted at the top hanging down over theleft ear and a fringe in front, (d) (a Saxon of the 8th century a. d.) has straggling hair, covering the nape of theneck. He has a short beard and a moustache, (e) (a Norman of the 11th century a. d.) The hair is covered by the helmet. The moustachedroops downward, (f) (Frankish, of the 9th century a. d.) The hair is short and shows only in frontbeneath the helmet.
Headdress:(a) The Celt wears a rough version of the Phrygian cap in dun-coloured felt orcoarse woollen stuff, (d) The Saxon has an iron helmet with a metal coxcomb orcrest, (e) The Norman’s helmet rises to a point and is decorated with metalstuds round the rim. (f) The Frankish soldier wears a development of theByzantine helmet, with a metal coxcomb. This type of helmet was worn in severalcountries in the centuries following the fall of Rome and may have been ofCeltic or Scandinavian origin.
Garments: (a) The Celt wears a plain, rough tunic, withlong sleeves, of sage green woollen stuff. His cloak, fastened on the rightshoulder, is of bright red and white stripes in heavy wool. He wears roughbraccae from below the knees, which are bare, to the ankles, (b) The Gaul’sonly garment is a pair of braccae of coarse brown woollen stuff tied at theankles and folded over a belt (unseen) at the waist, (c) The Frank wearsbraccae or loose hose of natural-coloured wool, bound on with strips ofwebbing. Over this is a one-piece garment of brown woollen stuff, possiblyknitted, with a yellow border, drawn on over the braccae. (d) The Saxon soldierwears a blue woollen tunic with long sleeves and a corselet of chain mail withpoints at the hips and the ends of the sleeves. His coarse hose are of brownyarn, bound over with webbing strips in a way that resembles puttees, (e) TheNorman soldier has a suit of mail that includes a hood with face-opening andbreeches, made as one garment. The sleeves end in metal or leatherwrist-guards. His hose are grey,
boundwith webbing strips, (f) The Frankish soldier has a long-sleeved tunic ofred-brown wool and over it a bip-length corselet of mail, with a broad collar. Brown leather strips hang from the shoulders and hips. Beneath the tunic arethick braccae of brown woollen stuff, ending below the knees and tied there.
Footwear:(a), (b) and (c) all have clumsy shoes of reversed leather, the fur still leftinside. Those of (a) are laced with thongs and those of (b) are pulled up withleather draw-strings. Those of (c) are tied over the insteps, (d) The Saxonsoldier has well-shaped leather shoes coming over the instep to the base of theankle, (e) The Norman has shoes of the same type and wears spurs, (f) TheFrankish soldier has leather sandals bound over the feet and up the legs to thecalves, but exposing the toes.
Accessories: (a) The Celt carries a spear, (b) The Gaul hasa short sword and a circular shield with a leather strap to put his armthrough. As the inside of the shield is shown, the reverse of large metalbosses can be seen, (c) The Frank has a long shield of leather stretched onwood, with bronze ornament, and carries a double-headed axe. (d) The Saxon hasa spear and a circular shield with a large boss and spike in the centre, (e)The Norman has a bow and arrow and wears a quiver containing arrows attached tohis leather belt. (0 The Frankcarries a lance.
the end ofthe 11th century, however, Anglo-Saxon and Norman dress began to take on a newassurance, as though now established in a life of its own. Individualcharacteristics, such as the draping of skirts, began to make their appearance.
In England and France changes ran more or less parallel toone another. The Danish incursions had little influence on English dress, theDanes being more prone to follow the fashions of the country they had invadedthan to impose their own.
Hair Men: In the 9th and 10thcenturies men’s hair was worn in a ‘bob’ with a centre parting or with thefront hair brushed forward in a fringe; occasionally it was left to grow toshoulder length. At the time of the Conquest the more moderately cut or evencropped hair of the Conqueror’s nobles was copied for a time, but the Englishseem never to have taken to the strange Norman custom of shaving the back ofthe head and brushing all the re maining hair forward. Very soon, however, longhair was again the fashion among Normans and English alike, and lasted into thenext century.
Hair Women: Except for younggirls, who wore their hair loose and flowing, women covered their hair almostentirely during this period. It may have been plaited or coiled and allowed tohang down the back under the veil.
Headdress RoyalCrowns: The foliated crown was rivalling the Byzantine type by the 10thcentury.
Headdress Men:The Phrygian cap was reintroduced in this epoch and was in wide use. A conicalcap was another fashion.
Headdress Women:The veils worn by women might be square, oblong or circular. To form theAnglo-Saxon ‘head-rail’ a square or oblong veil was put on over the head withone end hanging over the left shoulder in front. The other end was taken fromthe right side under the chin and round the neck. This was repeated, if theveil were large, and the right-hand end left to hang over the right shoulder infront or taken loosely over the chest and over the left shoulder once more. Forthe ordinary veiled headdress held in place by a fillet or circlet, the squareor oblong veils were put on the head with one edge slightly overhanging thebrow. The two sides hanging on each side of the face might be joined at thethroat by a brooch. The circular veils had a hole cut in them, roughly a footfrom the edge, so that the veil was thrown over the head with the face showingthrough the hole and the longer part of the material hanging down the back. This type of veil was super seded altogether by the rectangular type in the11th century.
Garments Men: Men wore the rectangular cloak fastened inthe centre or on the right shoulder, occasionally on the left. The semicircularcloak, now often closed down the front,
VI. 2.Anglo-Saxon. Three Figures
Hair:(a) (9th-10th century.) The hornblower’s hair is arranged to come forward in afringe on his fore head and to cover his ears. It is cut in a short ‘bob’,
(b) (9th 11 th century.) Theking’s hair is parted in the centre and long enough to touch his shoulders. Hewears a long, drooping moustache and a bifid beard, (c) The hair is hidden bythe headdress.
Headdress:(b) The king wears a square gold crown, ornamented at the four corners and setwith uncut jewels, (c) (10th 11th century.) The queen’s crown is of gold, setwith uncut jewels and her head-rail of gold tissue. This is fastened on theright side of her head beneath the crown. It is brought down over the rightside of the face, under the chin and over the top of the head, arranged infolds there and brought down on the right over the back of the head to coverthe shoulders, the end being thrown over the left shoulder.
Garments:(a) The hornblower wears a tunic of red - brown woollen stuff with a round, close neckline, slightly draped, and long, plain sleeves. The skirt is drapedup on the hips. The hose or leggings are of black wool, (b) The king’s tunic isof green wool, ornamented in gold. His cloak is of purple cloth, lined inscarlet, and is fastened on the left side of the chest. The leggings, frombelow the knees, are of scarlet wool, with tops ornamented in gold thread, (c)The queen wears an under-tunic of deep blue cloth and a circular cloak ofscarlet wool embroidered in black and gold and bordered in black. A black sash, contrived from a narrow rect angular veil or wrap, is fastened round the waist, leaving a large part of the circumference of the circle to form wide, drapedsleeves. The drapery on the left side covers the left hand and arm.
Footwear:(a) The hornblower wears boots of buff leather, higher at the back than infront, (b) The king’s shoes are of black fabric, bordered in gold. They coverthe insteps and end just below the ankle - bones. (c) The queen’s shoes arehardly seen, but would be of soft fabric, in this case gold, scarlet or blue.
Accessories: (a) The youth is playing a horn with several holes in itto produce different notes. It is supported on a forked stand held up by hisleft hand, (b) The king is playing a harp of gold,
(c) The queen carries a book inher right hand, supported also by her covered left hand.
had a hole (or the head madenearer the edge than formerly, so that a graceful but not too big fold was laidacross the chest on to both shoulders, and the remainder of the garment coveredthe back. Capes for all ceremonial occasions were very large and were liftedfrom the floor on their wearer’s arms when he needed to move freely.
The shorttunic remained in fashion throughout the 9th, 1 Oth and 11 th centuries andcould be draped upward at the hips. Elder statesmen and scholars, with membersof the King’s council, wore a longish gown with narrow, long sleeves, reminiscent of the tunica talaris of the late Roman epoch. The tunic still hadlong narrow sleeves.
The gown ortunic might have several under-tunics worn with it, the one next to the skinbeing called the ‘sherte’. Sleeves were more often set in than in earliertimes, instead of being cut in one with the garment (a fashion which stillcontinued) and the seams just below the shoulders were often hidden by a stripof embroidery. Hose or braies were worn beneath the tunic or gown with orwithout cross-binding.
Garments Women:Women’s mantles at this time could be semicircular, fastened on the rightshoulder or at the front with a brooch or, in the 11th century, across thechest with cords, or they could be circular, with a hole for the head (see‘Garments Men’).
In the 9th, 10th and 11th centuries the over-gown for womenof the nobility was long, in some cases trailing on the ground, and the skirtwas very voluminous, but it could be drawn up by fastenings at the waist oneither side or by an unseen girdle to form a drapery and to show the skirt ofthe under-gown, which could be equally long.
The neckline of the outer gown was at the base of thethroat, and was ornamented with embroidery, which also outlined the verticalopening in front. This was opened for the head to go through but was wornclosed. It was often hidden by the veil or cape. Sleeves could be moderatelywide or narrow, but if wide the long close sleeves of the under-gown werevisible at the wrists. Close-fitting sleeves were made long enough to be ruckedon the forearm. The beginning of the fashion for very deep borders to theover-sleeves was seen in women’s dress, as in that of men, in the last part ofthe 11 th century.
Footwear Men: Pedules (see‘Byzantine Dress’, Chapter V) over hose or, in the 10th century, sometimesleaving the knees exposed, were in general use, as were soft shoes which oftencame up round the ankle. Either might be worn with the short tunic, but shoeswere more usual with the long gown. Short hose resembling stockings, endingbelow the knees, were also worn.
Footwear Women:Women’s soft shoes and bootees were like those of men.
Materials, Colours and Ornament: Wool, linen and silk (the last at a great price), also somecotton, were available. Garments were decorated at the neck and at the bordersof skirts and sleeves by means of applique or embroidery, and gauze and silkwere used by the wealthy for veils, otherwise fine linen was used. Damask wasalready known. Fustian and home-spun made ordinary garments. Colours were muchas in the late Byzantine era.
Jewellery:Necklaces, earrings and bracelets were not worn. Brooches, rings, girdles andmantle-fastenings made up the chief jewellery worn in the Norman period and fora time afterwards.