Saturday, August 16, 2014

Breeches: 1370-1390

Livy, Ab urbe condita, French translation [Histoire romaine] by Pierre Bersuire Paris Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève Ms 777 f. 143r c. 1370 Vincent de Beauvais, Miroir Historial [Speculum historiale], French translation by Jean de Vignay. vol. III. (Livres XI-XIII). BNF NAF 15941 f. 112v 1370-1380 Aristoteles, Politica [French version (Politiques) by Nicole Oresme] Brussels, KBR, ms. 11201 f. 1v center (oligarchy) and bottom (democracy) 1376; Guiron le Courtois BNF Français 338 Ff 324v & 326 1380-1390

These images show a fairly rapid change in the tailoring of breeches. In the 1370 image the breeches are nearly knee length. The last image from the 1380-1390 Guiron le Courtois shows breeches that are hemmed much higher, and apparently cut tightly enough in the legs that side vents are needed for ease. And these sources may make the change seem more gradual than it was, because the 1370 Livy may be deliberately archaic in portraying the Romans: the armor looks to be pretty old-fashioned compared to contemporary effigies.

No comments: