Originally a length of woolen tartan cloth 1.5 m in width and up to 4 m in length. Worn with a wide belt and over the left shoulder this was the 'great kilt' or the Breacan, the Feileadh Bhreacain or the Feileadh Mor. The age of the great kilt is hotly debated.
The current garment is more similiar to the Leine Croich, a knee-length garment of leather, linen or canvas, heavily pleated and quilted as protection. The modern kilt is called the Feileadh Beg, or little kilt, designed for ordinary wear and so made of tartan or tweed, box-pleated or knife-pleated with the lower edges reaching not lower than the centre of the knee-cap. It dates from around the mid-18th Century, replacing the more simple belted plaid. The kilt is traditionally for men only, although in the modern era, long women's dresses patterned after kilts do exist, and women pipers frequently wear kilts.
It was made illegal to wear the Kilt in Scotland by the Dress Act of 1747, repealed in 1783.
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