Ayesha Kanwal


For centuries, there were only minor alterations to traditional Turkish dress, and these changes did not have an impact on the universal characteristics of the style. From its early period in Central Asia to the present, the main elements of Turkish attire continue to be the şalvar and the entari. (The şalvar are baggy trousers gathered in at the waist, while the bottom parts of the legs have either cuffs or pleats. These extend to just above the ankle and are usually worn with a raw silk shirt covered in turn by various types of entari, over which more robes may be worn.) The first part of this study outlines the historical development of the entari, one of the main elements of Turkish women's and men's wear, and its transformation between cultures. In the cities of modern Turkey, little trace is to be found of the wearing of traditional clothing, but it is known that these clothes still survive in various regions of Anatolia.1 While there have been some changes in these traditional dress forms, due to changing conditions and to variation in the quality of available material, the actual style of clothing has remained practically unaltered. The entari is a significant element of traditional culture which now is scarce, so it is important both for the cultural history of the Turks and in a wider context to establish and document the characteristics of these garments