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Trousers () or pants () are an item of that might have originated in , worn from the waist to the ankles, covering both legs separately (rather than with cloth extending across both legs as in , , and ).

In the , the word pants generally means and not trousers.

(1979). 9780004330785, Collins.
are similar to trousers, but with legs that come down only to around the area of the knee, higher or lower depending on the style of the garment. To distinguish them from shorts, trousers may be called "long trousers" in certain contexts such as , where tailored shorts may be called "short trousers", especially in the UK.

The oldest known trousers were found at the Yanghai cemetery in , , western China and dated to the period between the 13th and the 10th centuries BC. Made of wool, the trousers had straight legs and wide crotches and were likely made for horseback riding.

In most of , trousers have been worn since ancient times and throughout the period, becoming the most common form of lower-body clothing for adult males in the modern world. were worn instead of trousers in early modern Europe by some men in higher classes of society. Distinctive are traditionally worn with and semi-formal . Since the mid-20th century, trousers have increasingly been worn by women as well.

, made of denim, are a form of trousers for casual wear widely worn all over the world by both sexes. Shorts are often preferred in hot weather or for some sports and also often by children and adolescents. Trousers are worn on the hips or waist and are often held up by buttons, elastic, a belt or (braces).


Terminology
In , trousers are occasionally known as , which is the historic root of the word trousers. Trousers are also known as in , a word related to breeches. The item of clothing worn under trousers is . The standard form trousers is also used, but it is sometimes pronounced in a manner approximately represented by , as Scots did not completely undergo the Great Vowel Shift, and thus retains the vowel sound of the truis from which the word originates.

In North America, Australia, South Africa and Northern England pants is the general category term, whereas trousers (sometimes slacks in Australia and the United States) often refers more specifically to garments with a waistband, belt-loops, and a fly-front. So informal elastic-waist knitted garments would be called pants, but not trousers (or slacks).

North Americans call undergarments underwear, underpants, undies, or panties (the last are women's garments specifically) to distinguish them from other pants that are worn on the outside. The term normally refers to undergarments, but in some dialects, may be found as a synonym for "breeches", that is, trousers. In these dialects, the term underdrawers is used for undergarments. Many North Americans refer to their undergarments by their type, such as or .

In , men's underwear also has various informal terms including under-dacks, undies, dacks or jocks. In men's underwear is known informally as undies or dacks.

The words trouser (or pant) instead of trousers (or pants) is sometimes used in the tailoring and fashion industries as a generic term, for instance when discussing styles, such as "a flared trouser", rather than as a specific item. The words trousers and pants are , nouns that generally only appear in plural form—much like the words scissors and tongs, and as such pair of trousers is the usual correct form. However, the singular form is used in some compound words, such as trouser-leg, trouser-press and trouser-bottoms.

are trousers typically made from or dungaree cloth. Skin-tight leggings are commonly referred to as .


Types
There are several different main types of pants and trousers, such as , , , , , and . They can also be classified by fit, fabric, and other features. There is apparently no universal, overarching classification.


History

Prehistory
There is some evidence, from , of trousers being worn in the Upper Paleolithic, as seen on the figurines found at the Siberian sites of Mal'ta and Buret'.
(2019). 9780759104969, Rowman Altamira.
The oldest known trousers were found at the Yanghai cemetery, extracted from mummies in , , western China, belonging to the Eastern Iranian people of the ; dated to the period between the 13th and the 10th century BC and made of wool, the trousers had straight legs and wide crotches, and were likely made for horseback riding.


Antiquity
Trousers enter in the 6th century BC, on the rock carvings and artworks of ,Pictures show Achaemenid costumes including trousers. http://persianwondersvideo.blogspot.com.au/ and with the appearance of horse-riding in Greek ethnography. At this time, such as , , and among others, along with and and peoples such as the and , are known to have worn trousers.Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. pp. 49–51 Trousers are believed to have been worn by both sexes among these early users.Lever, James (1995, 2010). Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson. p. 15.

The used the term "ἀναξυρίδες" ( anaxyrides) for the trousers worn by nations ἀναξυρίδες, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus Digital Library and "σαράβαρα" ( sarabara) for the loose trousers worn by the Scythians. σαράβαρα, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus Digital Library However, they did not wear trousers since they thought them ridiculous,Euripides, Cyclops, 182Aristophanes, Wasps, 1087 using the word "θύλακοι" ( thulakoi), pl. of "θύλακος" ( thulakos), "sack", as a slang term for the loose trousers of and other . θύλακος, Henry George Liddell, Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon, on Perseus Digital Library

Republican viewed the of and Minoan () culture as an emblem of civilisation and disdained trousers as the mark of barbarians.Lever, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson, 1995, 2010. p. 50. As the Roman Empire expanded beyond the basin, however, the greater warmth provided by trousers led to their adoption.Payne, Blanche (1965). History of Costume. Harper & Row. p. 97 Two types of trousers eventually saw widespread use in Rome: the , which fit snugly and usually fell to knee or mid-calf length, "Feminalia.", The Fashion Encyclopedia. Retrieved 10 October 2010. and the , a loose-fitting trouser that was closed at the ankles. Both garments were adopted originally from the of Europe, although later familiarity with the Persian and the increased acceptance. Feminalia and Braccae both began use as military garments, spreading to civilian dress later, and were eventually made in a variety of materials including leather, wool, cotton and silk.Lever, James (1995, 2010). Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson. p. 40.


Medieval Europe
Trousers of various designs were worn throughout the Middle Ages in Europe, especially by men. Loose-fitting trousers were worn in under long ,Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. p. 124 and were worn by many tribes, such as the Germanic tribes that migrated to the Western Roman Empire in and the Early Middle Ages, as evidenced by both artistic sources and such relics as the 4th-century costumes recovered from the (see illustration).Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. Pp. 136–138 Trousers in this period, generally called brais, varied in length and were often closed at the cuff or even had attached foot coverings, although open-legged pants were also seen.Lever, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson, 1995, 2010. p. 51. By the 8th century there is evidence of the wearing in Europe of two layers of trousers, especially among upper-class males.Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. p. 142 The under layer is today referred to by costume historians as "drawers", although that usage did not emerge until the late 16th century. Over the drawers were worn trousers of wool or linen, which in the 10th century began to be referred to as breeches in many places. Tightness of fit and length of leg varied by period, class, and geography. (Open legged trousers can be seen on the soldiers of the .)Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. pp. 142, 154

Although (742–814) is recorded to have habitually worn trousers, donning the Byzantine tunic only for ceremonial occasions,Einhard. The Life of Charlemagne. University of Michigan Press, 1960.Lever, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson, 1995, 2010. pp. 50–51. the influence of the Roman past and the example of Byzantium led to the increasing use of long tunics by men, hiding most of the trousers from view and eventually rendering them an undergarment for many. As undergarments, these trousers became briefer or longer as the length of the various medieval outer garments changed, and were met by, and usually attached to, another garment variously called hose or .

In the 14th century it became common among the men of the noble and knightly classes to connect the hose directly to their Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. p. 180 (the padded under jacket worn with armoured breastplates that would later evolve into the doublet) rather than to their drawers. In the 15th century, rising hemlines led to ever briefer drawersLever, James. Costume and Fashion: A Concise History. Thames and Hudson, 1995, 2010. p. 58. until they were dispensed with altogether by the most fashionable elites who joined their skin-tight hose back into trousers.Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. p. 207 These trousers, which we would today call tights but which were still called hose or sometimes joined hose at the time, emerged late in the 15th century and were conspicuous by their open crotch which was covered by an independently fastening front panel, the . The exposure of the hose to the waist was consistent with 15th-century trends, which also brought the pourpoint/doublet and the , previously undergarments, into view,Payne, Blanche. History of Costume. Harper & Row, 1965. p. 200 but the most revealing of these fashions were only ever adopted at court and not by the general population.

Men's clothes in Hungary in the 15th century consisted of a shirt and trousers as underwear, and a worn over them, as well as a short fur-lined or sheepskin coat. Hungarians generally wore simple trousers, only their colour being unusual; the dolman covered the greater part of the trousers.


Europe before the 1900s
Around the turn of the 16th century it became conventional to separate hose into two pieces, one from the waist to the crotch which fastened around the top of the legs, called trunk hose, and the other running beneath it to the foot. The trunk hose soon reached down the thigh to fasten below the knee and were now usually called "" to distinguish them from the lower-leg coverings still called hose or, sometimes stockings. By the end of the 16th century, the codpiece had also been incorporated into breeches which featured a fly or fall front opening.

As a modernisation measure, Tsar Peter the Great of Russia issued a decree in 1701 commanding every Russian man, other than clergy and peasant farmers, to wear trousers.

During the French Revolution of 1789 and following, male citizens of France adopted a working-class costume including ankle-length trousers, or pantaloons (named from a Commedia dell'Arte character named ) Italian Culture in the Drama of Shakespeare and His Contemporaries, ed. Michele Marrapodi 2007 in place of the aristocratic knee-breeches ( ). (Compare .) The new garment of the revolutionaries differed from that of the ancien regime upper classes in three ways:

  • it was loose where the style for breeches had most recently been form-fitting
  • it was ankle length where breeches had generally been knee-length for more than two centuries
  • they were open at the bottom while breeches were fastened

Pantaloons became fashionable in early 19th-century England and the . The style was introduced by (1778–1840) and by mid-century had supplanted breeches as fashionable street-wear. At this point, even knee-length pants adopted the open bottoms of trousers (see ) and were worn by young boys, for sports, and in tropical climates. Breeches proper survived into the 20th century as , and also in baggy mid-calf (or three-quarter length) versions known as or knickers worn for active sports and by young schoolboys. Types of breeches are still worn today by and American football players, and by equestrians.

Sailors may have played a role in the worldwide dissemination of trousers as a fashion. In the 17th and 18th centuries, sailors wore baggy trousers known as . Sailors also pioneered the wearing of - trousers made of . These became more popular in the late 19th century in the because of their ruggedness and durability.

Starting around the mid-19th century, pit-brow girls scandalised by wearing trousers for their work at the local . They wore skirts over their trousers and rolled them up to their waists to keep them out of the way. Although pit-brow lasses worked above ground at the pit-head, their task of sorting and shovelling coal involved hard manual labour, so wearing the usual long skirts of the time would have greatly hindered their movements.


Medieval Korea
The Korean word for trousers, baji (originally pajibaji) first appears in recorded history around the turn of the 15th century, but pants may have been in use by Korean society for some time. From at least this time pants were worn by both sexes in Korea. Men wore trousers either as outer garments or beneath skirts, while it was unusual for adult women to wear their pants (termed ) without a covering skirt. As in Europe, a wide variety of styles came to define regions, time periods and age and gender groups, from the unlined gouei to the padded sombaji.Lee, Kyung Ja, and Hong Na Young and Chang Sook Hwan, translated by Shin Jooyoung. Traditional Korean Costume. Global Orient, 2003. p. 231.


Women wearing trousers
See also the "Laws" section below in this article.

In Western society, it was Eastern culture that inspired French designer (1879–1944) to be one of the first to design pants for women. In 1913, Poiret created loose-fitting, wide-leg trousers for women called harem pants, which were based on the costumes of the popular ballet Sheherazade. Written by Nikolai in 1888, Sheherazade was based on a collection of legends from the Middle East called 1001 Arabian Nights.

In the early 20th century women air pilots and other working women often wore trousers. Frequent photographs from the 1930s of actresses and Katharine Hepburn in trousers helped make trousers acceptable for women. During World War II, women employed in factories or doing other "men's work" on war service wore trousers when the job demanded it. In the post-war era, trousers became acceptable casual wear for gardening, the beach, and other leisure pursuits. In Britain during World War II the rationing of clothing prompted women to wear their husbands' civilian clothes, including trousers, to work while the husbands men were serving in the armed forces. This was partly because they were seen as practical for work, but also so that women could keep their clothing allowance for other uses. As this practice of wearing trousers became more widespread and as the men's clothing wore out, replacements were needed. By the summer of 1944, it was reported that sales of women's trousers were five times more than the previous year.

In 1919, challenged mainstream society by becoming the first woman in Puerto Rico to wear trousers in public. Capetillo was sent to jail for what was considered to be a crime, but the charges were later dropped.

In the 1960s, André Courrèges introduced long trousers for women as a fashion item, leading to the era of the and and the gradual erosion of social prohibitions against girls and women wearing trousers in schools, the workplace and in fine restaurants.

In 1969, Rep. (R-Ill.) became the first woman to wear trousers in the .

was the first American to wear trousers in public.

In 1989, California state senator became the first woman to wear trousers in a US state senate.

was the first woman to wear trousers in an official American First Lady portrait.

In in 1992, a woman's jeans became a central issue in a rape case. A 45-year-old driving instructor was accused of rape. When he picked up an 18-year-old girl for her first driving lesson, he allegedly raped her for an hour, then threatened to kill her if she reported the crime. Later that night she told her parents, who sought to press charges. While the alleged rapist was convicted and sentenced, the Italian Supreme Court overturned the conviction in 1998 because the victim wore tight jeans. It was argued that she must have necessarily have had to help her attacker remove her jeans, thus making the act ("because the victim wore very, very tight jeans, she had to help him remove them...and by removing the jeans...it was no longer rape but consensual sex"). The Italian Supreme Court stated in its decision “it is a fact of common experience that it is nearly impossible to slip off tight jeans even partly without the active collaboration of the person who is wearing them.” This ruling sparked widespread feminist protest. The day after the decision, women in the Italian Parliament protested by wearing jeans and holding placards that read “Jeans: An Alibi for Rape.” As a sign of support, the California Senate and Assembly followed suit. Soon Patricia Giggans, Executive Director of the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women, (now Peace Over Violence) made an annual event. As of 2011 at least 20 U.S. states officially recognize Denim Day in April. As of 2008 the Italian Supreme Court has overturned their findings, and there is no longer a "denim" defense to the charge of rape.

Women were not allowed to wear trousers on the US Senate floor until 1993. In 1993, Senators and Carol Moseley Braun wore trousers onto the floor in defiance of the rule, and female support staff followed soon after, with the rule being amended later that year by Senate Sergeant-at-Arms to allow women to wear trousers on the floor so long as they also wore a jacket.

In women were not legally allowed to wear trousers under President 's rule until 1994.Sarah DeCapua, Malawi in Pictures, 2009, pg 7. This law was introduced in 1965.

Since 2004 the International Skating Union has allowed women to wear trousers instead of skirts in ice skating competition.

In 2009, journalist was fined the equivalent of $200 when a court found her guilty of violating Sudan's decency laws by wearing trousers.

In 2012 the Royal Canadian Mounted Police began to allow women to wear trousers and boots with all their formal uniforms.

In 2012 and 2013, some women participated in "Wear Pants to Church Day", in which they wore trousers to church instead of the customary dresses to encourage gender equality within The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Over one thousand women participated in 2012.

In 2013, Turkey's parliament ended a ban on women lawmakers wearing trousers in its assembly.

Also in 2013, an old bylaw requiring women in Paris, France to ask permission from city authorities before "dressing as men", including wearing trousers (with exceptions for those "holding a bicycle handlebar or the reins of a horse") was declared officially revoked by France's Women's Rights Minister, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem. The bylaw was originally intended to prevent women from wearing the pantalons fashionable with Parisian rebels in the French Revolution.

In 2014, an Indian family court in ruled that a husband objecting to his wife wearing a and and forcing her to wear a amounts to cruelty inflicted by the husband and can be a ground to seek divorce. The wife was thus granted a divorce on the ground of cruelty as defined under section 27(1)(d) of Special Marriage Act, 1954.

Until 2016 some female crew members on were required to wear British Airways’ standard "ambassador" uniform, which has not traditionally included trousers.

In 2017, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced that its female employees could wear "professional pantsuits and dress slacks" Https://www.wsbradio.com/news/national/female-mormon-missionaries-given-option-wear-dress-slacks/3JvcGA9xS8XaSPLDJZAaJI/< /ref>

In 2019, began to allow its female flight attendants to wear pants.


Parts of trousers

Pleats
just below the waistband on the front typify many styles of formal and casual trousers, including suit trousers and . There may be one, two, three, or no pleats, which may face either direction. When the pleats open towards the pockets they are called reverse pleats (typical of most trousers today) and when they open toward the fly they are known as forward pleats.


Cuffs
Trouser-makers can finish the legs by the bottom to prevent fraying. Trousers with (cuffs in American English), after hemming, are rolled outward and sometimes pressed or stitched into place.


Fly
A fly is a covering over an opening join concealing the mechanism, such as a , or buttons, used to join the opening. In trousers, this is most commonly an opening covering the , which makes the pants easier to put on or take off. The opening also allows men to without lowering their trousers.

Trousers have varied historically in whether or not they have a fly. Originally, hose did not cover the area between the legs. This was instead covered by a doublet or by a . When breeches were worn, during the Regency period for example, they were fall-fronted (or broad fall). Later, after trousers (pantaloons) were invented, the fly-front (split fall) emerged.Croonborg, Frederick: The Blue Book of Men's Tailoring. Croonborg Sartorial Co. New York and Chicago, 1907. p. 123 The panelled front returned as a sporting option, such as in riding breeches, but is now hardly ever used, a fly being by far the most common fastening. Most flies now use a zipper, though button-fly pants continue to be available.


Trouser support
At present, most trousers are held up through the assistance of a belt which is passed through the belt loops on the waistband of the trousers. However, this was traditionally a style acceptable only for casual trousers and work trousers; suit trousers and formal trousers were suspended by the use of ( suspenders in American English) attached to buttons located on the interior or exterior of the waistband. Today, this remains the preferred method of trouser support amongst adherents of classical British tailoring. Many men claim this method is more effective and more comfortable because it requires no cinching of the waist or periodic adjustment.


Society
In modern Western society, males customarily wear trousers and not skirts or dresses. There are exceptions, however, such as the ceremonial Scottish and Greek , as well as robes or robe-like clothing such as the of clergy and the academic robes, both rarely worn today in daily use. (See also Men's skirts.)

Based on Deuteronomy 22:5 in the ("The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man"), some groups, including the Amish, Hutterites, some Mennonites, some Baptists, a few Church of Christ groups, and most Orthodox Jews, believe that women trousers. These groups permit women to wear as long as they are hidden. By contrast, many Muslim sects approve of pants as they are considered more modest than any skirt that is shorter than ankle length. However, some mosques require ankle length trousers for both Muslims and non-Muslims on the premises.

Among certain groups, low-rise, baggy trousers exposing became ; for example, among and in 1990s hip hop fashion. This fashion is called sagging or, alternatively, "busting slack."

Cut-offs are homemade made by cutting the legs off trousers, usually after holes have been worn in fabric around the knees. This extends the useful life of the trousers. The remaining leg fabric may be hemmed or left to fray after being cut.


Laws

France
In 2013, a law requiring women in Paris, France to ask permission from city authorities before "dressing as men", including wearing trousers (with exceptions for those "holding a bicycle handlebar or the reins of a horse") was declared officially revoked by France's Women's Rights Minister, Najat Vallaud-Belkacem. The bylaw was originally intended to prevent women from wearing the pantalons fashionable with Parisian rebels in the French Revolution.


India
In 2014, an Indian family court in ruled that a husband objecting to his wife wearing a and and forcing her to wear a amounts to cruelty inflicted by the husband and can be a ground to seek divorce. The wife was thus granted a divorce on the ground of cruelty as defined under section 27(1)(d) of Special Marriage Act, 1954.


Italy
In in 1992, a 45-year-old driving instructor was accused of rape. When he picked up an 18-year-old girl for her first driving lesson, he allegedly raped her for an hour, then told her that if she was to tell anyone he would kill her. Later that night she told her parents and her parents agreed to help her press charges. While the alleged rapist was convicted and sentenced, the Italian Supreme Court overturned the conviction in 1998 because the victim wore tight jeans. It was argued that she must have necessarily have had to help her attacker remove her jeans, thus making the act ("because the victim wore very, very tight jeans, she had to help him remove them...and by removing the jeans...it was no longer rape but consensual sex"). The Italian Supreme Court stated in its decision “it is a fact of common experience that it is nearly impossible to slip off tight jeans even partly without the active collaboration of the person who is wearing them.” This ruling sparked widespread feminist protest. The day after the decision, women in the Italian Parliament protested by wearing jeans and holding placards that read “Jeans: An Alibi for Rape.” As a sign of support, the California Senate and Assembly followed suit. Soon Patricia Giggans, Executive Director of the Los Angeles Commission on Assaults Against Women, (now Peace Over Violence) made an annual event. As of 2011 at least 20 U.S. states officially recognize Denim Day in April. Wearing jeans on this day, 22 April, has become an international symbol of protest. As of 2008 the Italian Supreme Court has overturned their findings, and there is no longer a "denim" defense to the charge of rape.


Malawi
In Malawi women were not legally allowed to wear trousers under President 's rule until 1994. This law was introduced in 1965.


Puerto Rico
In 1919, challenged mainstream society by becoming the first woman in Puerto Rico to wear trousers in public. Capetillo was sent to jail for what was then considered to be a crime, but, the judge later dropped the charges against her.


Turkey
In 2013, Turkey's parliament ended a ban on women lawmakers wearing trousers in its assembly.


Sudan
In Sudan, Article 152 of the Memorandum to the 1991 Penal Code prohibits the wearing of "obscene outfits" in public. This law has been used to arrest and prosecute women wearing trousers. Thirteen women including journalist were arrested in Khartoum in July 2009 for wearing trousers; ten of the women pleaded guilty and were flogged with ten lashes and fined 250 Sudanese pounds apiece. Lubna al-Hussein considers herself a good Muslim and asserts "Islam does not say whether a woman can wear trousers or not. I'm not afraid of being flogged. It doesn't hurt. But it is insulting." She was eventually found guilty and fined the equivalent of $200 rather than being flogged.


United States
In May 2004, in , Democrat and state legislator proposed a bill that would make it a crime to appear wearing trousers below the waist and thereby exposing one's skin or "intimate clothing". The Louisiana bill did not pass.

In February 2005, legislators tried to pass a similar law that would have made punishable by a $50 fine "any person who, while in a public place, intentionally wears and displays his below-waist undergarments, intended to cover a person's intimate parts, in a lewd or indecent manner". (It is not clear whether, with the same coverage by the trousers, exposing underwear was considered worse than exposing bare skin, or whether the latter was already covered by another law.) The law passed in the Virginia House of Delegates. However, various criticisms to it arose. For example, newspaper columnists and radio hosts consistently said that since most people that would be penalised under the law would be young men, the law would thus be a form of racial discrimination. Virginia's state senators voted against passing the law.

In , Government Code Section 12947.5 (part of the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA)) expressly protects the right to wear pants. Thus, the standard California FEHA discrimination complaint form includes an option for "denied the right to wear pants."


See also


External links

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