Legal wigs were originally devised to provide anonymity. But unlike a genuine barrister’s wig made of horsehair, this knitted-wool version was likely worn in jest or as part of a costume. The wearer attended Lincoln’s Inn – one of four Inns of Court in London – where members attended qualifying sessions before being called to the bar.

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Can you think of other traditional objects or practices that evolved over time so their original purpose is no longer widely known?

responded: Sep 20, 2011

Posted by felicia

Recommend this Response
Many details on contemporary clothing have lost their original use and serve as purely decorative. For example some designers keep the military details on a trench coat such as the D rings on the belt to best serve the look of a traditional, though they serve little purpose to a civilian wearer. Additionally, many garments have transcended their original use and have become wardrobe classics or trends for the every day consumer. Some examples are motorcycle jackets, blue jeans, white t-shirts, and leg warmers. Often these pieces filter down from pop culture to the masses as admirers of the style seek to emulate the look. From function to fashion, people have found way to see beauty even in the most utilitarian of objects.

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