handkerchief

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handkerchief.

In classical Greece pieces of fine perfumed cotton, known as mouth or perspiration cloths, were often used by the wealthy. From the 1st cent. B.C., Roman men of rank used an oblong cloth of linen (the sudarium) chiefly to wipe perspiration from the face and hands. During the empire a square handkerchief of cotton or silk was carried, especially by women. The handkerchief was dropped by the praetors as a starting signal in the Roman games and was waved by spectators as a sign of approval. In the Middle Ages it was a prized possession and was conspicuously displayed by the wealthy. It was worn by knights in tournament as the symbol of a lady's favor. It came into general use in the Renaissance and was called a napkyn. Silk, cambric, and lawn, lavishly embroidered or laced, became fashionable for both men and women. Shapes were also varied. Today the handkerchief is more practical than decorative. Disposable paper handkerchiefs are used for all but very formal occasions. The handkerchief carried in the left hand of the officiating priest in the early Christian church evolved into a folded band that by the 12th cent. had become the maniple, worn on the left arm.
References in periodicals archive ?
Few experienced that well- known scene where an embarrassed car salesman mutters into his hankerchief as he tries to tell you how little your car is now worth.
Simply use a hankerchief or tissue when you sneeze or, if you have to sneeze in your hand, wash your hands after sneezing.
The Dublin widower, who suffers from very severe asthma, sent off for the blessed hankerchief two weeks ago in a desperate bid for relief.
And remember, there's not a person on the PLANET who doesn't go into raptures at the sight of a set of six monogrammed hankerchiefs, or a bath sheet thoughtfully inscribed with the timeless epithet 'Pete's towel'.
Some residents wore surgical masks or covered their faces with hankerchiefs when they walked outside.
Product coverage: boxed facial tissues, pocket hankerchiefs.
Espanyol's pride will have been hurt by last Sunday's shock 4-0 loss at home to Racing, which was greeted by jeers and white hankerchiefs at the final whistle.
The Nou Camp attendance of 39,298 was their worst of the season and those who did turn used it was an opportunity to vent their anger, waving white hankerchiefs in protest at the club's board.
When they searched the warehouse, officers also found two other consignments of paper hankerchiefs, indicating that the smugglers had previously carried out two dummy-runs on the new route before sending the cocaine.
They tossed around a few ideas with the club's head of supporter services Anthony Emmerson before settling on the 30 inch square red hankerchiefs, a familiar sight among Basque crowds at annual public festivals like the annual Bull Run - and at football matches in the region.
Before the wassail, they will entertain visitors by dancing with swords, sticks, hankerchiefs and bells from noon to 1.