Anglophilia and American Trad

rojo

Super Member
origin of the term "Oxford cloth"

The story goes, attributed by an Internet source to _Fairchild's Dictionary of Textiles_, that a 19th century Scottish mill introduced four new shirting materials and named them after famous universities. They had Cambridge cloth, Harvard cloth, Yale cloth, and Oxford cloth.

Another web site has a snippet from 1957 offering a Cambridge cloth button-down: "Great catch... University Glen Shirt in exclusive new Arrow Cambridge Cloth. Your favorite button-down, the Arrow Glen, is now styled in traditional collegiate fashion. It's offered in feather-soft Arrow Cambridge Cloth-a new partner in popularity to the classic Oxford. Collar buttons down, front and center back. Full length box-pleat"

Oxford cloth is familiar to everyone: "Warp has two fine yarns which travel as one and one heavier softly-spun bulky filling which gives it a basket-weave look." I have no idea what Cambridge, Yale, or Harvard cloth looked like.
 

dpihl

Super Member
Ooooops!

Harris said:
I had heard (more than once) that "Weejuns" hit the shores of England well before they made it to America. Apparently they didn't "catch on" in England the way they did in the U.S.A.
Harris, you were right after all!

I'm assuming you read the thread about the history of Norwegian shoes?

In the future, I'll have to remember not to doubt your vast knowledge base.

I guess this is another case like the song "The Lion Sleeps Tonight".

Although some may tell you it is a song by the Nylons, or the Tokens, or some other popular group, there is more to the story than ASCAP or the Copyright office care to know about.

I'm told the song was originally sung by Black Mombasa.

Don't know if that's true or not, but it makes sense.
 

LondonFogey

Senior Member
One could (and indeed some hard core Scottish Nationalists do) argue that tartan is actually an English invention. The wearing of tartan was banned by law after the ''45' (the 1745 uprising) and when the English rediscovered Scotland in the Victorian era, most of the original tartans had been lost, so many of those we see now are English recreations.
 

dpihl

Super Member
Tweels and Twills

LondonFogey said:
One could (and indeed some hard core Scottish Nationalists do) argue that tartan is actually an English invention. The wearing of tartan was banned by law after the ''45' (the 1745 uprising) and when the English rediscovered Scotland in the Victorian era, most of the original tartans had been lost, so many of those we see now are English recreations.

Going along with your point, I once read a very interesting factoid in the Encyclopedia Brittanica. "Tweed" is an American invention, at least insofar as the name is concerned.

It seems there was an American merchant who had ordered some fabrics from a Scottish weaver. The Celtic word "tweel" (twill) had been written in cursive on the invoice. It looked like it said "tweed". The American Merchant dutifully began advertising the fabric using his misreading of the invoice as the basis for its name.
 

AlanC

Sartorial Sultan<br> Moderator, Trad Forum
Probably something like Anglophile Southern Traditional would better describe my clothing leanings than 'Trad', although that's a bit of a mouthful. I look to London and Charleston for sartorial guidance, not Boston.
 
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