The phenomenon of a tie: why not the most convenient and “useless” men’s accessory is still in vogue

It is unlikely that there is at least one businessman or office clerk who once did not think about the question of the advisability of tying a tie around his neck. After all, there is no practical benefit from it, and sometimes it also causes inconvenience. However, at the same time, the demand for ties does not dry out over the years, and it seems completely impossible to imagine that this men’s accessory will go out of fashion one day. But, if you delve into the history of this wardrobe item, you can see that it, in various modifications and variants, has been accompanying the stronger sex for more than one thousand years.

The tie has a long and entertaining history. / Photo:

For more than a dozen centuries, people have come up with a variety of forms of primitive ties, and each nation gave it its own functionality. Some of the first people who were definitely seen wearing a piece of cloth around their necks were Roman legionnaires at the beginning of the first millennium AD.

The soldiers wrapped strips of cloth around their necks in order to provide the skin with perfect protection from the weather or friction against armor. Moreover, some researchers are of the opinion that it was the Roman legionnaires who were the creators of the first analogs of ties or scarves.

Of course, this piece of fabric cannot be called a tie, but the first step has already been taken. / Photo:

At the same time, a number of historians put forward another version of the origin of the tack – they associate its appearance with the Chinese. So, as a result of large-scale excavations of the legendary “Terracotta Army” of the 3rd century BC, which was created by order of the first Chinese emperor Qin Shi Huang, it was revealed that the statues of some high-ranking warriors reflect the practice of wearing neckerchiefs, and according to another version – ties in various modifications. However, unlike the Romans, the Chinese military in this way denoted the rank order of soldiers or their titles.

Even the earthen warriors have acquired neckerchiefs. / Photo:

However, the appearance of the first direct prototype of the modern tie occurred much later. So, according to, most researchers date its appearance around 1646-1650. It was during these years that the French king Louis XIV decided to strengthen his army at the expense of Croatian mercenaries. It was the latter who preferred to wear fabric stripes with oblique lines, similar in silhouette to a sword, on their necks.

There is no exact data on the function of such a scarf, but most historians agree that in this way they reflected their occupation. Many modern tailors agree with this interpretation of the origin: so, according to their assumptions, the first progenitors of the tie appeared around the 17th century, during the Thirty Years War in France.

The ceremonial uniforms of the Croatian regiments today cannot do without the progenitor of the tie. / Photo:

King Louis XIV considered such small or short ties to be an excellent accessory, and soon introduced their wearing as an obligatory piece of clothing at all royal gatherings. Moreover, the French court acquired another person with an original position – even the chief specialist in ties. It was since then that the trend of wearing ties began to spread throughout Europe. And the name of this wardrobe item refers us to the first owners – Louis gave the accessory a name in honor of Croatian soldiers – “La Cravate” – this name of the tie in French still exists today.

The king liked the scarf around his neck so much that soon everyone began to wear them. / Photo:

But in the form familiar to us, a tie appeared not so long ago – in the twenties of the last century, when the manufacturer of ties from New York Jesse Langsdorf received a patent for a new method of cutting fabric at an angle, and then he began to sew it into three segments, cut according to oblique line. This is how the modern elongated tie was created, which, moreover, made it possible to tie it in a considerable number of ways.

The new style of the tie gained immense popularity, which continues today. / Photo:

Today, the tie is still an important component and decorative element of men’s wardrobe. However, it is still not entirely clear what to wear, if there is no practical use for them? In fact, this is not entirely true: most researchers of the history of fashion agree that there are two such reasons. Firstly, for many years a tie has remained the only formal accessory for men that allows expressing individuality, mood and even character traits.

The tie is still a popular accessory for men. / Photo:

And secondly, oddly enough, it has a positive effect on the career of many workers who are forced to confine themselves to office style. For example, sociological research clearly demonstrates that men with expensive ties around their necks leave a stronger impression after interviews, get better jobs and even earn more money, because bosses and entrepreneurs often put men with perfect ties in management positions.

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