MW April 19, 2021

After my father had debated the affair of the breeches with my mother, –he consulted Albertus Rubenius upon it; and Albertus Rubenius used my father ten times worse in the consultation (if possible) than even my
father had used my mother: For as Rubenius had wrote a quarto express, De re Vestiaria Veterum, –it was Rubenius’s business to have given my father some lights. –On the contrary, my father might as well have thought of extracting the seven cardinal virtues out of a long beard, –as of extracting a single word out of Rubenius upon the subject. Upon every other article of ancient dress, Rubenius was very communicative to my father; –gave him a full and satisfactory account

The Toga, or loose gown.
The Chlamys.
The Ephod.
The Tunica, or Jacket.
The Synthesis.
The Pænula.
The Lacema, with its Cucullus.
The Paludamentum.
The Prætexta.
The Sagum, or soldier’s jerkin.
The Trabea: of which, according to Suetonius, there were three

—-But what are all these to the breeches? said my father. Rubenius threw him down upon the counter all kinds of shoes which had been in fashion with the Romans.——
There was, …

Author and Text

Is it a question of classical dress–what a tunic was like, or a chlamys, or a peplus? At this day, you have to point to some vile woodcut, in the middle of a dictionary page, representing the thing hung upon a stick, but then, you would point to a hundred figures, wearing the actual dress, in its fiery colours, in all actions of various stateliness or strength; you would understand at once how it fell round the people’s limbs as they stood, how it drifted from their shoulders as they went, how it veiled their faces as they wept, how it covered their heads in the day of battle.

Author and Text