But why did powdered wigs enter the fashion scene in the first place? Why cover the head with a mass of artificial curls that itch and transpile? Syphilis is to blame. The courtwear of British judges and lawyers (as the British call lawyers) may seem straight out of the Renaissance, but wigs and dresses are more than just an opportunity to dress up. The tradition of wearing a white wig and dress dates back to the 17th century – and few uniforms have changed since then. By 2007, wigs were no longer required for family or civil court appearances or appearances at the UK Supreme Court. Wigs are still worn in criminal cases and some lawyers choose to wear them in civil proceedings. Lawyers: Male lawyers must wear a white, rigid wing collar alongside a dark double-breasted suit with a bar jacket or court vest. Female lawyers must wear a dark suit with ribbons attached to a collar next to their bar jacket or vest Horsehair may sound disgusting, but in the past, people took hair from human corpses to make these wigs, so it could be worse. And vegans are even involved, because being judged is no reason not to signal one`s own moral superiority. And in Ireland, judges wore wigs until 2011, when the practice was abandoned. In England and other former English and British colonies – such as Canada, for example, whose provinces abandoned wigs in the 19th and 20th centuries, or Jamaica, which retired wigs in 2013 – lawyers and judges wear wigs only for ceremonies.
By the 1820s, wigs had gone out of fashion, but coachmen, bishops, and lawyers continued to wear them. The coachmen and bishops ceased in the mid-1830s, but again, the courts retained the tradition. Many wonder why the tradition of dresses and wigs has lasted so long. Traditionalists will tell you that the uniform has a sense of power and respect for the law. Dresses and wigs also make it difficult for criminal defendants to identify judges outside the courtroom. Courtroom attire isn`t just boring in black and white. The seasons and the type of case determine the color and style of the dress worn by the judges. Dresses of purple, green, black, and scarlet fever have served a variety of purposes over the years, although color requirements have often fluctuated over the past few centuries. When it comes to trendsetters, no one has had a greater impact on British wigs than Louis XIV of France. During his reign from 1643 to 1715, the Sun King disguised his prematurely bald scalp – historians believe it was caused by syphilis – with a wig. In doing so, he set in motion a trend widely followed by Europe`s upper and middle classes, including his cousin Charles II, the King of England (who is also said to have syphilis), who reigned from 1660 to 1685.
I feel like the only thing missing from the groom`s costume is the fake ass wig worn by British lawyers, #OurPerfectWedding pic.twitter.com/9AqpOQniax legal clothes continue to evolve to this day. Last year, we reported that an Australian company manufactures and sells vegan plastic wigs. Its goal, they told us, is to meet the needs of all its customers, and given the rise of veganism, it makes sense to offer synthetic wig options. Wigs and dresses worn by judges and lawyers in the former British colonies are among the most blatant symbols of colonial legacy; a legacy so old-fashioned and uncomfortable that even British lawyers stopped wearing it.t.co/T3aGEDw8yW pic.twitter.com/iqWBRTH8cW The trend of wearing wigs at court was initiated by Louis XIV of France. In the mid-17th century, a bald scalp was considered a sign that someone had contracted syphilis. Therefore, the king disguised his scalp with a wig. This trend quickly spread to the upper and middle classes in Europe, including Britain, where Charles II followed. Kevin Newton, a UK-based lawyer from Washington D.C., described the wig in uniform as a symbol of uniformity. The practice of wearing wigs creates a distinction between the law and those who are called upon to stand before it. How strange and hilarious was it when you first went through your social studies book as a kid and realized George Washington wasn`t the only American politician to swing that ridiculous hairstyle? And how much weirder was it to discover that British lawyers today carry on the tradition of wearing a white wig that looks more like a caricature of a judge in Mr. Toad`s Wild Ride than in a modern courtroom? The reforms suggest that the court is becoming increasingly flexible when it comes to lawyers wearing wigs.
It is possible that they will be thrown away in the next 50 years. This must have helped that wigs were made from white horsehair, with cheaper wigs made from the follicles of a shaved goat instead. It didn`t take long for wigs to become a status symbol, and if that sounds strange to you, remember that sneakers have gone from no-frills sportswear to a multi-billion dollar industry and there are people who dedicate their entire lives to reselling sneakers. That`s probably not what afflicts Amal Clooney today. But today, the reason the legal community still approves of wearing wigs is the same reason their judges sometimes wear black caps – to kill people. Well, not quite. Judges wear black caps when handing down death sentences, but that`s one of the main reasons everyone wears wigs. It`s all part of a symbolic distancing. Peruke, as they call their wigs because “wig” was not a ridiculous name, is largely meant to separate the lawyer or judge from the work they do.