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The Bonnet and the Beret in Medieval and German Renaissance Art

Margit Stadtlober    Universität Graz, Österreich    



This paper presents an art-historic contribution, examining the bonnet and the beret as characteristic forms of female and male headdresses and their manifold variations and oriental origins. Both types of head coverings are shaped by sociocultural attitudes and evolved in form. Embedded within the wider context of clothing they also, in turn, influence social norms and attitude. Examining their history and genesis also reveals and raises gender-specific perspectives and questions. The depiction and representation of the bonnet and beret during two defining periods in the visual arts, incorporating role-play and creativity, present a considerable knowledge transfer through media. First instances of gender-specific dress codes can be traced back to the Bible and therefore Paul’s rules for head covering for women in 1 Cor 11,2-16 is intensively debated. The following chapter will trace and illustrate the history of female and male head coverings on the example of various works of art. The strict rules outlined in 1 Corinthian 11 prescribing appropriate head coverings in ceremonial settings, which had a significant and lasting impact, have in time been transformed through the creative freedom afforded by the mundanity of fashion.

Aug. 30, 2021
Aug. 3, 2021
July 1, 2021

Keywords: Female Head CoveringVeilBonnetHenninBeret

Copyright: © 2021 Margit Stadtlober. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.