South African Boys' Clothes: Traditional Garments

Figure 1.--These South African Zulu boys are wearing the traditional garments of loin cloth with beads and stringd that boys not yet old enough to be inducted into the tribe as warriors.

At this time we are just beginning to collect information on African traditional garments. Here there are differences from tribe to tribe. Like Native Americans in America, the various tribes could be destinguished from their traditional dress. Boys clothing tenbded to be very basic. Younger children might wear no clothes at all. Older boys might wear a simple loin cloth with a variety of embelishments, especially for important occassions. As boys' traditional clothing was so basic, it was often difficult tribes from the clothes boys wore. This changed when boys usually at puberty joined the tribe as adults and became earr-iors. The dress of adults copuld be quite elaborate and could be used to identiy the tribe. There are quite a number of tribes in South Africa. The largest is the Zulu tribe amd we know a good bit about traditioinal Zulu costumes. Mosy Zulus commonly wear Western clothing, but commonly dress up in often elaborate traditioinal outfits for specisl occasions.


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Created: 5:40 AM 5/4/2010
Last updated: 5:40 AM 5/4/2010