Taraz the Armenia's Soul and Identity
The traditional Armenian costume is dominated by the colors of the four elements: Earth, Water, Air and Fire. According to the fourteenth-century Armenian philosopher Krikor Tatevatsi, the Armenian costume is made to express the ancestral soil, the whiteness of water, the red of air and the yellow of fire. Apricot symbolizes wisdom and common sense, Red symbolizes courage and martyrdom, Blue symbolizes heavenly justice, White symbolizes purity.
Some of the techniques used to make these costumes have survived to this day and are widely used in Applied Arts, others have been lost. Each province of Armenia is distinguished by its costume and such famous centers of Armenian needlework as, Van-vaspurakan, Karen (Erzurum), Shirak, Syunik-Artsakh, Cilicia, stand out for their stereotypical and harmonious depiction of ornaments, color combinations and composition.
In an Armenian family, men's clothes, especially the head of the house, were paid special attention, as men judged the family as a whole by their appearance.
The traditional Armenian costume for men consisted of a low-collared silk or cotton shirt with a side clasp which was paired with wide trousers made from dark wool or cotton. Over the shirt was worn a cotton or silk arkhalig, a jacket with a low collar fastened from the waist down with hooks or small buttons.
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