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What Did Ancient Egypt Pharaohs Wear?

Updated November 21, 2016

The clothing of Egyptian pharaohs differed substantially from that of the common Egyptian man. The only similarities in clothing were the robe and materials. The pharaoh was meant to demonstrate a particular example of cleanliness and wealth through his attire. In addition to main clothing items, pharaohs wore decorated sandals and large amounts of jewellery.

Fabric

Like most Egyptians, pharaohs wore clothing made of linen. The linen worn by pharaohs was particularly transparent; this was a visible representation of wealth. Linen was made from flax, a plant native to the region.

False Beard

Many pharaohs wore false beards. These were attached using thin leather wraps encircling the head.

Nemes

Pharaohs donned a head piece known as a nemes. The nemes was originally made of a single-coloured piece of linen and evolved in complexity over time.

Shendyt

The shendyt (a royal apron) was the main piece of clothing in a pharaoh's ensemble. It was placed at the right hip and wrapped around the body, back to front, with detailed pleating.

Robe

Egyptian men wore robes of linen over their kiltlike garments. This garment, in the pharaoh's wardrobe, was to be the most transparent.

Khol

The pharaoh wore khol, a substance made with a dark dye. Khol was applied around the eye to prevent infections and reduce sun glare in the desert climate.

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