If not for the Wars, Trousers wouldn't be in our Wardrobe.
If not for the Wars, Trousers wouldn't be in our Wardrobe. | Credit: Ylanite Koppens

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If not for the Wars, Trousers wouldn't be in our Wardrobe.

Jan 29, 2019

Did everyone like trousers at first?

Today trousers are fashionable worldwide! Did everyone like the idea of wearing trousers when they first came into existence? Not every one did!

For example, the Ancient Greeks scoffed at the idea of wearing trousers. To them it was such a stupid and laughable thing!

The Greeks were joined by the Romans in their dislike and redicule of trousers. As far as they were concerned, pants were worn by barbaric people. However, their redicule did not last forever. Why?

The more their rulership increased the world over, the more the popularity of trousers increased too! It was difficult to stop this fashion of trousers around the world because trousers provided some kind of warmth and easy-to-wear feeling!

How humans started wearing trousers

For years men and women were accustomed to wearing robes (a robe is cloth that look like dress). Why did they change? How did humans find themselves wearing pants or trousers? 

Trousers came into existence because robes were so cumbersome and inconveniencing when riding a horse. Something had to be done about this.

Additionally, it was difficult to wage war if one was wearing a robe. Those who preferred to wear trousers while engaging in warfare found it easier to fight than those who wore robes. And so to fight battles successfully, soldiers preferred trousers worldwide.

Earliest reports of trousers

When were the earliest bits of information reported on trousers? It was by the sixth-century BC by Greek geographers. They reported on how the Persian, Eastern and Central Asian horse-riders looked in trousers. They looked very uncomplicated and comfortable for them. And no wonder they opted for this type of attire.

Fashion never remains the same

It was the soldiers who wore pants first on horseback while engaging in warfare. They were initially snug shorts or loose-fitting trousers that came all the way to the ankles where they were closed.

As years pass, fashion always changes. And that’s what happened to trousers by the late fourteenth century. They became tight-fitting trousers with attached foot coverings. The knights did wear them underneath a plate armour.

As usual, humans are always looking for ways to change fashion. Gradually, trousers changed to a huge and balloon-like shape around the thighs and closed at the ankles. All this came about by 1500.

There were some attempts that were made to alter these pants further. But these attempts didn’t last long. Attempts to make trousers to reach only the knees where they would be fastened were quickly abandoned. Humans loved trousers that reached the ankles, especially the working class.

Our modern-day trousers

When and how did we end up wearing the trousers that we now wear? In the nineteenth century.

By that time humans started wearing looser-fitting trousers with a button fly and neutral colours.

And who else contributed to the kind of trousers we now enjoy wearing today? Edward VII, the eldest son of Queen Victoria. He is the same guy who made the trousers creases to go into the mainstream.

How women started wearing trousers

How did women start enjoying this fad of trousers? Of course, both women and men were used to trousers. However, these trousers were viewed as clothes for men only for hundreds of years. Our dear women used to wear lengthy and huge skirts.

But fashion never gets tired of changing. Women began to enjoy wearing trousers in the nineteenth century in another different way. They wore them while riding a horse but with a full skirt on top just to hide the trousers.

Did the adaptability and changeability of fashion end there? Not at all! The issue of leisure brought some changes in terms of wearing trousers for women. While riding a bicycle, these trousers were not easily entangled or trapped in the wheels. And who doesn’t want to have some freedom of movement? That’s what trousers did for women. All these changes came about in the 1880s.

No one could stop the trend of wearing trousers around the world. Nonetheless, things were not the same with all women. Why? It was even against the law to wear pants in some places.

But fashion changed things by the 1970s for women! Today, it’s so beautiful to see how women wear trousers at all appropriate events! And people rarely think of trousers as clothes meant for men only!

That’s how pants or trousers become fashionable, likeable, acceptable and preferable among young and old—and among women and men!