Picture of Queen Elizabeth I
 

Elizabethan Clothing allowed for Men

  • Interesting Facts and information about Elizabethan Clothing allowed for men
  • English Sumptuary Law and Elizabethan Clothing
  • men's Clothing
  • The clothes men were allowed to wear in the Elizabethan Era

Picture of Queen Elizabeth I

Elizabethan Clothing allowed for men

 

Interesting Facts and Information about Elizabethan men's Clothing and the Sumptuary Laws

Elizabethan men were not allowed to wear whatever they liked! It did not matter how wealthy they were - the color, fabric and material of their clothes were dictated by their rank, status or position and this was enforced by English Law! These laws about clothing in the Elizabethan era were called Sumptuary Laws.

 
 
 

They were designed to limit the expenditure of people on clothes - and of course to maintain the social structure of the Elizabethan Class system! The clothes that Elizabethan men wore were dictated by the Sumptuary Law as decreed by Queen Elizabeth I on 15 June 1574. The fabrics and colors of clothes which men were allowed to wear were determined by their position and rank! Some interesting facts and information about Elizabethan men's Clothing and the Sumptuary Laws during the Elizabethan era.

The Meaning of Elizabethan Clothing
The rank and position of Elizabethan men could be immediately recognised by the color and material of their clothes. The English Sumptuary Laws were well known by all of the English people.

 

And they were strictly obeyed! The penalties for violating Sumptuary Laws could be harsh - fines, the loss of property, title and even life! Elizabethan men only wore clothes that they were allowed to wear - by Law!

The Meaning of Colors in Elizabethan Era Clothing
The table below contains full details of the meaning of the colors which were allowed to be worn by Elizabethan men in relation to their position, status or position. Bright and dark colours were generally more expensive to produce and therefore limited to higher status clothing. The meaning of specific colors which were allowed to be worn during the Elizabethan Era are further detailed in the above link.

Materials worn in Elizabethan Era Clothing
The table below contains full details of the meaning of the materials worn by Elizabethan men in relation to their position, status or position. Silks, velvets and furs were the most expensive materials and fabrics to produce and therefore limited to higher status clothing. Additional information regarding the materials which were allowed to be worn during the Elizabethan Era are further detailed in the above link.

 
 

The Meaning of Colors in Elizabethan Clothing
Material & Fabrics used in Elizabethan Era Clothing

Elizabethan Clothing allowed for Men

Status or Position

Material of Clothing allowed

Color of Clothing allowed

Item of Clothing allowed

King, King's mother, children, brethren, and uncles
Silk
Purple
Any Clothing
Dukes, Marquises, and Earls
Silk
Purple
Doublets, jerkins, linings of cloaks, gowns, and hose
Dukes, Marquises, and Earls
Sable Fur
-
-
Knights of the Garter
Silk
Purple
Mantles only
Above Viscounts, and barons, and other persons of like degree
Tinseled satin, silk, or cloth mixed or embroidered with any gold
Gold
Doublets, jerkins, linings of cloaks, gowns, and hose.
Above Viscounts, and barons, and other persons of like degree
Cloth of Silver, Tinseled satin, silk, or cloth mixed or embroidered with any gold
Silver
Doublets, jerkins, linings of cloaks, gowns, and hose.
Above ranks
Woolen cloth made out of the realm
-
Caps only
Dukes, Marquises, Earls, and their children, Viscounts, Barons, and Knights of the Garter, or any person being of the Privy Council.
Velvet
Crimson, or Scarlet
 
Above ranks
Furs
-
 
Above ranks
Embroidery or tailor's work having gold or silver or pearl therein
Gold or Silver
Embroidery
Above ranks
Genets or Lucernces (Furs)
Black Fur
 
Barons' sons, Knights and gentlemen in ordinary office attendant upon her majesty's person, and such as have been employed in Embassages to foreign princes.
Velvet

Fur of leopards

Embroidery with any silk

-
Gowns, Coats, or other uttermost garments
The gentlemen attending upon the Queen's person in her highness's Privy chamber, cupbearers, carvers, servers, Esquire for the body, Gentlemen Ushers, or Esquires of the stable
Clothing trimmed with gold or silver or pearl; silk netherstocks; enameled chains, buttons, aglets
Gold or Silver trimmings
Caps, hats, hatbands, capbands, garters, or boothose
As above
Satin, damask, silk, camlet, or taffeta
 
Gown, coat, hose, or uppermost garments
As above
Fur whereof the kind groweth not in the Queen's dominions, except foins, genets, and budge
Grey Fur
Gown, coat, uppermost garments
Knight, son or heir
Scabbards of swords, daggers, etc
-
-
Knight, son or heir or above
Gilt
-
Spurs, swords, rapiers, daggers, skeans, woodknives, or hangers, buckles or girdles
As above
Velvet
-
Hat, bonnet, girdle, shoes and pantofles
As above
Satin, damask, taffeta, camlet
-
Doublets
As above
Sarcanet, camlet, or taffeta
-
Facing of gowns and cloaks
As above
As above
Deep Blue
Gowns and cloaks, and in coats, jackets, jerkins, coifs, purses
Lord Chancellor, Treasurer, President of the council, Privy Seal
Velvet, satin, or other silks
Except purple
 
Lord Chancellor, Treasurer, President of the council, Privy Seal
Furs
Black except for black genets
 
Justices , Barons of the Exchequer, Master of the Rolls, sergeants at law, Masters of the Chancery, of the Queen's council, apprentices of law, physicians of the King, mayors and other head officers of any towns corporate
Cottons and taffeta

All Except silk, velvet, damask or satin

Except crimson, violet, purple, deep blue.
 
Lower Class Men
Wool, linen and sheepskin
Brown, beige, yellow, orange, russet, green, grey and blue (not the deep rich indigo but dyed with woad)
 
Lower Class Men
Silk, taffeta and velvet trimmings allowed
-
Buttons and the facing of coats, cloaks, hats and caps
 

Clothing allowed for men during the Elizabethan Era
The following table detailing Elizabethan clothing allowed for men has been compiled directly from the Sumptuary Laws called the 'Statutes of Apparel' which were enforced by Queen Elizabeth I in Greenwich on 15 June 1574

Elizabethan Elizabethan Clothing allowed for Men
Details, facts and information about the Elizabethan Clothing allowed for Women in the Elizabethan Clothing can be accessed via the Elizabethan Era Sitemap.

Elizabethan Clothing allowed for Men

  • Interesting Facts and information about Elizabethan Clothing allowed for men
  • English Sumptuary Law and Elizabethan Clothing
  • men's Clothing
  • The clothes men were allowed to wear in the Elizabethan Era
 
 

Queen Elizabeth's Coat of Arms

 

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