Stola

Stola

[stoh-luh]

The stola was the traditional garment of Roman women, corresponding to the toga that was worn by men. In ancient Rome, it was considered disgraceful for a woman to wear a toga; wearing the male garment was associated with prostitution.

The stola was a long, pleated dress, worn over a tunic (the tunica intima, the Roman version of a slip). A stola generally had long sleeves (but not always; occasionally it was held up by straps), but the sleeves could either be a part of the stola itself, or part of the tunic. The stola was typically girt with ribbons. It was frequently accompanied by a long shawl-like garment called a palla. Use of the stola continued through the Byzantine period.

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