Separated by a Common Language – Pants!

My big brother is writing about pants. Or his writing is pants. I’m not yet sure. Maybe you have an idea

The Curious Archaeologist

Of all the words that divide English from the version spoken in North America, none causes more confusion than ‘Pants’. In English they are underwear whilst in America they refer to trousers, so how did this very curious dichotomy come about.

To begin we must go back to the eighteenth century, men wore breeches, short trousers that were buckled or buttoned below the knee underneath drawers were worn, garments similar to the modern boxer shorts. Women wore skirts over chemises or petticoats, and that was all.

Then, at the beginning of the nineteenth century ‘long breeches’ were introduced.

The word trousers did exist in the eighteenth century, in both Britain and North America. They were a protective garment, usually of leather, worn over breeches when travelling in rough country. In the late eighteenth century these were adopted as part of military dress, the British Army, serving in India and the…

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About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published four books - Dead Flies and Sherry Trifle, My Father and Other Liars, Salisbury Square and Buster & Moo. In addition I have published two anthologies of short stories, Life, in a Grain of Sand and Life in a Flash. More will appear soon, including a memoir of my mother's last years. I will try and continue to blog regularly at about whatever takes my fancy. I hope it does yours too. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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