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made, any shoes, galoches, or buskins, with poleyns exceeding the length of two inches, under the forfeiture of 20s."
The succeeding year, according to Stow, “ It was pro. claimed throughout England, that the beaks or pikes of shoes or boots, should not exceed two inches, upon pain of cursing by the clergy, and forfeiting 20 shillings, one noble to the king, another to the cordwainers of London, and the third to the chamber of London.” *
These regulations were repeated as often as occasion required; but the turbulent times which succeeded in the reigns of EDWARD V and RichARD III. furnish little maiter for our parpose.
Henry VII. According to Stow, the use of square bonnets, worn by noblemen, gentlemen, citizens and others, took place in this reign.
At the close of the fifteenth century, dress was not only fantastical, but absurd; it was difficult to distinguish the sexes. Petticoats were worn over their lower covering by the men; their doublets had all the appearance of women's stays, 'and stomachers laced before; their gowns were open in front to the girdle, and again from the girdle to the ground, on which they were sufficiently long to trail. Their sleeves were sometimes strait; but nearly divided at the elbows, to display the shirt; sometimes they were loose and wide, reaching intirely to the wrists.
HENRY VIII. The dress of the king and the nobles, in the beginning of this reign, was not unlike that worn by the yeoman of the guard at present. Walpole, in his Anecdotes of Painting, relates that" Anne Bolen wore yellow mourning for Catharine of Arragon.” The same circomstance is related in Hall's Chronicle, with the addition of Henry's wearing white mourning for the unfortunate Anne Bolen. “Crimson,” says Mr. Granger, “ would have been a much more suitable colour.”
It appears that variety of apparel began to take place during Henry's reign. Before the first book of Andrew Borde's “ Introduction of Knowledge,'' &c. in which he characterizes an Englishman, is a wooden print of a naked man, with a piece of cloth hanging on his right arm, and a pair of sheers in his left hand; under which are the following lines:
“ I am an Englishman, and naked I stand here,
Soon after the accession of this monarch the masculine petticoats were expelled, and in their stead trausers, or close hose, fitted to the limbs, took place. The breeches to which they were connected, exhibited an artificial protuberance, gross and indecent, which formed a part of dress, from the prince to the peasant. The fashion originated in France, and, ridiculous to add, absolutely served for the purpose of a pin-cushion. To make up for the straitness of the hose, they
s bombasted," as Bulwer in his “ Pedigree of the English Gallant,” expresses it, “ their doublets, and puffed them out above the shoulders, so that they were exceedingly cumbersome. The ladies followed the example of the gentlemen, and invented a kind of doublet with high wings and puffed sleeves, which continued in full fashion till the reign of Elizabeth.
Another innovation during this reign was the trunk breeches or slops, which swelled out to an enormous size, and were stuffed out with rags, wool, tow or bair. Holingshed tells a curious story, said to be founded on fact. " A prisoner appearing before a judge to answer an accusation against him, at the time that the law prohibited wearing baise stuffed into the breeches, was told that he wore his breeches contrary to the law: he began to excuse himself of the offence, and endeavouring by little and little to discharge himself of that which he did wear within them, he drew out of his breeches a pair of sheets, two table cloths, ten napkins, four shirts, a brush, a glass, and a comb, night caps, and other things of use, saying, (all the hall being strewed with this furniture) * your highness may understand, that because I have no safer a store-house, these pockets do serve me for a room to lay up my goods in, and though it be a straight prison, yet it is a storehouse big enough ior them, for I have many things more of value yet within it.' And so his discharge was accepted and well laughed at; and they commanded him that he should not alter the furniture of his storehouse, but that he should rid the hall of his stuff, and keep them as it pleased him." *
* A writer of this period, satyrizing the enormity of dress, writes, " that men's servants, to whom the fashion of their masters descend with their clothes, have such pleytes upon theyr brestes, and ruffles upon theyr sleeves above theyr elbows, that, yfe theyr master or themselves hade nerer so great neede, they could not shoote one shote to hurte theyr enemyes, tyll they had caste of theyr cotes, or cut of theyr sleeves.".
Over the seats in the Parliament House were holes two inches square in the wall, in which were posts supporting a scaffold round the rooms, for the use of those who wore great breeches, stuffed with hair, like woolsacks. The scaffolds continued till the reign of Elizabeth, when they were taken down, the fashion having for a long time subsided. Harl. MSS. No. 990.
Towards the latter end of Henry's reign the king wore a round flat scarlet or black velvet cap, with a broach or jewel and feather. The courtiers and others followed the fashions; this induced the younger citizens to imitate their superiors, and they also appeared in flat black caps, knit with woollen yarn; bat they were so light, that they were obliged to tie them under their chins, lest the wind should blow them off. The use of these flat round caps increased, and superseded the French bonnets or square caps; the junior aldermen began to use them, and ultimately Sir John White, lord mayor in 1563 wore the flat caps in his mayoralty, which served as a precedent for his successors. These however gave way to the Spanish felts, which were commonly worn by the clergy and laity.
The dress of the ladies of these times consisted of silk or velvet, richly laced and embroidered with gold. The bosom was open, with a broad bodice, edged with gold lace, pearl necklaces round the neck from one of which hung a rich jewel. The sleeves at the wrists, at which was a small ruffle, were slashed, above which they were composed of cloth of gold, over which was a handsome covering of crimson vel. vet. The head-dress was composed of a hood, behind which hung a veil of black; the hood was cloth of gold and crimson velvet, the front of which over the face was of a triangular form, whence it descended to the neck, and was richly adorned with jewellery. "The above is taken from the portrait of queen Catharine Par in Lambeth Palace; a fine fac-simile of which is inserted in BRAYLEY and HERBERT's Historical Description of that building. · EDWARD VI. The dress of this monarch, according to his portrait in the Court Room at Christ's Hospital, by HolBEIN, consists of a flat hat, with a white feather falling on the left side; his coat, with half sleeves, is crimson, glazed over a lighter colour, on a border of deep red, embroidered with gold tracery, down each breast are double rows of gold wire or basket buttons, the lining ermine; the waistcoat is of white cloth or silk, richly embroidered in gold squares; the legs covered in the same way. A small frill round the neck. There was very little variety in dress during the short reign of this amiable monarch. The habiliment of that period is however transmitted to us, in the graceful dress of the scholars in Christ's Hospital.
MARY I. This was the æra of ruffs and farthingales, which were brought hither from Spain, in consequence of her marriage with Philip II. *
A blooming • Howel tells us in his “ Letters" that the Spanish word for a far.