Underwear? Underwhere?

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Posted by Doc M on March 12, 2000 at 14:17:14:

Oh dear, Doctor Mary hates to be difficult --well, that's not
true. Doctor Mary LOVES to be difficult. However, she has just
spent a lovely hour going through an old reference book
called The History of Underclothes, and it states quite
plainly that underbreeches were worn by men from the 1600s
through the late 1700s, which comes as a huge relief, I
must say. Now, she speaks not for Scotsmen or frontiersman
on long hunts away from all human habitation, but it seems
as if everyone else did. To quote ..."Men and women {of that
time period} were generally dirty and often verminous. It
was their experience that silk and linen undergarments next
to the skin were less liable to harbor lice than the wearing
of woolens, which did not become usual for undergarments until
the era of physical cleanliness opened a century later." There
were two types of drawers at that time, according to the
text..."trunks cut full and square, fastened with ribbons
in the front, a small slit behind, and tied at the back.
The second type are long drawers with stirrups -- a band
which passed under the instep to prevent the garment from
slipping up the leg." As far as the ladies went, some wore
drawers, some didn't, but the garments were not unknown
in any case.

Doc M

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