Home Academics Vita Philosophy Portfolio Resources         

Egyptian ] [ Greek ] Roman ] Romanesque/Byzantine ] Gothic ] Renaissance ] Elizabethan ] Cavalier/Puritan ] Restoration ] Georgian ] Directoire ] Romantic ] Crinoline ] Bustle ] Gay '90's ] Edwardian ]

Back Next

DATES: 3000 - 100 BCE
bulletMycenian / Cretan 3000 - 1200 BCE
bulletTrojan War 1200 BCE
bulletOlympic Games 776 BCE
bulletArchaic 600 - 480 BCE
bulletGolden Age 480-400 BCE
bulletFourth Century 400 - 320 BCE
bulletHelenistic 320 - 100 BCE


bulletArchitectural Sculpture
bulletVase Paintings
bulletPortrait busts


bulletHandbook of Greek Art - Richter
bulletArts of the Ancient Greeks - Brilliant
bulletThe world of Classic Athens- Giannelli
bulletMaster Pieces of Greek Art - Schoder
bulletMycenians in History - Sameh
bulletClassical Greek Art - Schoder
bulletCostumes of the Ancients - Hope
bulletAncient Greek Roman, and Byzantine Costumes - Houston
bulletA Shorter History of Greek Art - Robertson


bulletCoriolanus - Shakespeare
bulletCymbline - Shakespeare
bulletAll works of: Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes, etc.

Greek clothing was made out of three types of materials. The first mostly used was wool which was woven from very coarse to very soft. They used linen grades from fine to very soft. Drapery in Greek culture did not fold crisply like Egyptian folds fell and the linen was not as stiff as the linen used in Egypt.

Greek garments were essentially the same for men and women and were not shaped or fitted to the body but draped on the body in soft folds. There were four types, which were all rectangles: the chiton (dress), Doric and Ionic over draperies, the himation and the chlamys.

Men wore their hair long at the beginning of Greek culture but it soon became fashionable to have shorter hair with little facial hair. Older men would wear mustaches with a shortly-trimmed beard and if a man had a mustache and no beard they were not Greek. In the archaic period women wore their hair hanging in snaky curls held by a fillet but as time passed women would wear their hair up and confined in bag, kerchiefs or nets.

Colors of this period were bright-hued like yellow, indigo, green, violet, dark red, dark purple and colors that were from the earth. Motifs ranged from geometric like the dentil and arrangements of circles and squares to vegetable forms like the laurel, ivy and waterleaf.

Notable Greek Clothing Elements
Doric Chiton—A garment worn to the sixth century. It was of wool dyed indigo, madder or saffron, frequently patterned, especially at the turn of the fifth century. Its upper edge was folded over to hang down on the breast; it was folded around the body, caught together on each shoulder by bins, leaving the arms uncovered, and though open down the right side, was held in place by the girdle, over which it bloused. In Corinth and Attica, it was sewn together down the side below the waistline. With time, the garment grew wider and was known as the Doric chiton, and over-fold deepened so that it was included in the girdling or hung over and concealed the girdle. When not girded, the over-fold could be raised over the head in back as a shawl.  

  wpeA.gif (28380 bytes) 

Ionic Chiton—Of Phoenician origin. Most often seen in sources as a female garment. It was made of thin woolens, probably crepe-like, similar to materials still woven in Greece; also of linen, or the gauzy materials from Cos in Asia Minor, patterned in murex (Tyrian) purple. It was cut with ample width from two pieces, then sewn together along the top of the extended arm, frequently pleated, and long, sometimes trailing. It was often sewn or caught together all the way down the right side with the left side open. It was worn in many way by both men and women, and particularly by musicians and charioteers. The chiton was often worn with a short wrap the chalmydon.

Himation—A rectangle of wool with weighted corners, slung over the left shoulder, leaving the right arm free; or worn , by married women, with the corner over the head like a shawl. Dorian older men wore it as their only garment (as did the Athenians in their return to an earlier simplicity, in the third to second centuries, B.C.) A man wearing the himation alone was alas adequately dressed. It served also as a blanket. The colors were natural wool colors: white, natural, browns, and black; or died scarlet, crimson or purple. The garment sometimes had woven patterns, selvages, and embroidery.
Chlamys—A smaller woolen rectangle than the himation, of Macedonian or Italian origin; sometimes bordered, pinned at right shoulder or front; worn with short chiton or alone by younger, more active men.
Peplos—Refers to the fabric folded over and hanging down across the top of the Doric chiton.  peplosdiag

Updated Summer of 2002 by
CWU FCS-Fashion Major
Mami Nonomura

horizontal rule

This page is the property of Scott R. Robinson and may not reflect the opinions of CWU nor any of its departments
Material on this web site may be used for educational purposed, if this footer is included.  
Grateful appreciation is extended for all the links that assist in sharing this information with my classes.
All Rights Reserved  2000 - 2010