Minor British Institutions: The flat cap
Saturday 27 March 2010
Government intervention in the world of fashion is rare, but can have long-lasting effects. In 1571, parliament passed legislation that required all males, excepting noblemen, over the age of six to wear a woollen cap on Sundays and holidays, on pain of a fine. In those days, the wool trade was the foundation of the English economy, and the Tudors were determined to protect it.
The law was repealed in 1597, but the flat cap had gained critical mass, and by the early 20th century was ubiquitous, and usually associated with the working classes. By the 1950s, Labour had become concerned about what was termed its "flat cap" image, and Andy Capp was the nation's favourite layabout.
The decline of the working man has, ironically, left the flat cap to the landed classes, and today the conceptually similar but more exuberant baseball cap, sometimes placed back-to-front, has taken on the role of signifying (usually) lower social status, especially in Burberry trim. Still, if the cap fits...
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
- 1 Stephen Fry ‘criticises Operation Yewtree in dinner party rant’ calling for tougher laws to deter false sex abuse allegations
- 2 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 3 Israel-Gaza conflict: ‘Sderot cinema’ image shows Israelis with popcorn and chairs 'cheering as missiles strike Palestinian targets'
- 4 War is war: Why I stand with Israel
- 5 Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
Emergency data law: David Cameron plots to bring back snoopers’ charter
NUT strike: David Cameron announces crackdown on strike action ahead of mass industrial action
£40000 - £60000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Dynamics CRM D...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: Web Developer ...
£50000 - £67000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# R&D .NE...
£40000 - £50000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...