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Alternative Uses Of Garments In The Graeco-Roman World

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses yet another instance of dissimilarity between Antiquity and later history, namely dress. The fact of the matter is that the Greeks and the Romans did not wear clothes made to measure. Essentially, there were two categories of garments: 1) a tunic, worn next to the skin, 2) a mantle, worn over the tunic. People did not always wear both sorts at once; both literature and the visual arts provide evidence of either the tunic or the mantle as the only garment. The crucial feature is the looseness of the mantle. This aspect made it fit for several uses that are rather unexpected to modern minds. The chapter discusses them by presenting some relevant passages. As the focus is on the Graeco-Roman world, passages from the Old Testament are quoted in the version of the Septuagint.

Keywords: garments; Graeco-Roman world; mantle; Old Testament; Septuagint; tunic

10.1163/ej.9789004180895.i-704.101
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