Encyclopedia of Medieval Dress and Textiles

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Naming of garments in Old English
(2,210 words)

Old English clothing vocabulary is extensive, containing synonyms and overlaps, and suggesting a much greater range of garments than contemporary art implies. Pairs of words can sometimes be found: a compound may exist alongside a simplex word, such as sceanc-bend and wining, both names for garters, and native compounds alongside synonymous Latin loans. Some such compounds may have been scholarly coinages, nonce words found only in glossaries, but some of them manifestly are not: when Bishop Theodred bequeathed vestments which he had bought in Pavia, he called them by the name mæsse-h…

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Gale R. Owen-Crocker, “Naming of garments in Old English”, in: Encyclopedia of Medieval Dress and Textiles, Edited by: Gale Owen-Crocker, Elizabeth Coatsworth, Maria Hayward. Consulted online on 30 September 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2213-2139_emdt_COM_469>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004124356, 20120503

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