a students' magazine

A History of Fashion: European Fashion before Christ

Fashion was born when humans began to cover themselves with processed materials.

Successively the habit became a characteristic of the different social classes and a way to express or to mask different aspects of  personality.

Here there is a list of the different historical periods with their main characteristics.


In the Mediterranean area, the clothes of the Etruscans, Romans and Greeks were really similar: they hadn’t sleeves and were all fixed by a belt. The differences between the different styles didn’t depend on the cut of the tissue. They sometimes used a cloak.


Romans used the “toga”, a big oval cloak enveloped about the head.
From the Republic to the Empire, clothes were different according to the different social role of  people: they were white with a purple edge for senators, white only for the competitors for a political office and dark for the mourning.

Women of the oldest Roman period used a cloak to cover their heads, but later the fashion of elegant and elaborate hairstyles developed. In this period  the “ornatrix” (the equivalent of the modern hairdresser) was born, who would do women’s hair every morning.


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