Neckerchief

Neckerchief

[nek-er-chif, -cheef]
A neckerchief is a type of neckwear associated with Scouts and sailors. It consists of a triangular piece of cloth or a rectanglular piece folded into a triangle. The long edge is rolled towards the point, leaving a portion unrolled. The neckerchief is then fastened around the neck with the ends either tied or clasped with a slide or woggle.

The wearing of neckerchiefs

Neckerchiefs worn by sailors are shaped like a square, and are folded in half diagonally before rolling, with rolling occurring from the tip of the resulting triangle to its hypotenuse. Either neckerchief is then placed on the wearer's back, under or over the shirt collar with the ends at the front of the wearer. The rolled ends then pass around the neck until they meet in front of it, where they are secured together, either with a knot, such as a reef knot, or with a rubber band or other fastener (called a woggle or neckerchief slide) and allowed to hang.

In the United States Navy; solid black neckerchiefs are currently part of the men's and women's service dress uniform for junior enlisted sailors.

Scouting connection

The Scouting movement makes the neckerchief part of its uniform. A generally ceremonial item, the neckerchief is taught to be a practical wilderness item in the Scouting tradition. The neckerchief, unrolled, is designed to be the perfect size for use as a trianglular bandage for first aid.

In most countries each Scout Troop uses its own colour neckerchief. The colours are usually the "Troop Colours" which may have a particular historical significance to the troop or to the local community.

In Canada, while most groups (troops is not a term in general use) use colour neckerchiefs, there is also an optional alternate universal pattern tartan neckerchief: white plaid on red for Scouts, gold plaid on dark green for Cubs. Alternating thick and thin lines of the plaid spell out "CANADA" in Morse code.

In Australia, each state has its own scarf featuring its state logo

In other countries individual patrols are identifiable by their neckerchiefs and so troops may have many different neckerchiefs all at once. In both of these cases the neckerchief and its colours are an issue of identity, and become emblematic of a troop or a patrol.

Gilwell Park neckerchief

Neckerchiefs can have important ceremonial functions in Scouting too. An example of this is the 1st Gilwell Scout Group neckerchief presented on completion of the Wood Badge.

See also

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