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Northwestern European "Under-Gowns"

Poster: Cambok@aol.com

Gentles of the Merry Rose,

I am looking for an authentic description of a gown that would be worn under
the tunic/surcoat/overgown (your term here) of a typical Northwestern
European woman - say from 1000 AD - 1100 AD.

I have found a number of decent links to garb sites with lots of information
on the over dresses, but each one only ventured a passing mention of what was
worn underneath.  Oh, sure - I could do the research myself and hog all the
glory, or I can be magnanimous give my fellow Atlantians the opportunity to
astonish us all with their knowledge.  

I'm guessing that it would be made from either fine/light wool, linen or

Would it be cut like a t-tunic with the sleeves attached at mid-arm, or would
the sleeves be set in?

Would there be gussets under the arms?  (How does one put the *&#$! things
in, anyway - why not just curve the seam, for that matter?)  

What was the shape of the neckline and what type of closure (if any) was used
at the neckline?  

How were the neckline, sleeves and hem decorated?

Was the body of the undergown cut as one piece folded at the shoulders?  Was
there a seam at the shoulder?  If it was cut in more than one piece, how many
pieces were there?  Was the dress loose or tight on the arms and torso? 

What were the typical colours?

In appreciation,

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