The humble necktie’s Croatian origins

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The cravat ceremony in Croatia

The habit of wearing a humble tie, one of the most used fashion details worn by men, originated with the 17th century Croatian mercenaries fighting in the Thirty Years’ War.

The mercenaries came from the Croatian Krajina on the edge of the Ottoman Empire to fight with the French wearing distinct neckties made of linen, lace or muslin, depending on their social status and military rank.

The necktie was a sign of recognition since military uniforms weren’t wide-spread in the 17th century. It was Louis XIV who started the cravat craze by doing away with starched collars and appointing a royal cravat-maker to the Court. The rest, as they say, is history.

International Necktie Day is celebrated on October 18 in Croatia and in various cities around the world, including Sydney.