Saturday, September 26, 2009

An Irish version of the beret: the Caubeen

A caubeen is an Irish headdress and another variation on the beret (and quite similar to the Scottish balmoral). The name comes from the Irish cáibín, meaning "little hat", or "shabby old hat" and was the headwear of Irish peasants.

The caubeen is first seen in a painting of Eoghan Rua Ó Néill (Owen Roe O'Neill, in English),

leader of the Irish Confederate soldiers in the civil war between Charles I and Parliament in the 1640's.

The caubeen has been adopted by several armies of theBritish Commonwealth (like the British Royal Irish Rangers and the Canadian Irish Regiment of Canada).

The caubeen is very high on one side and generally carries a black rosette (in the army this is where the regimental badge is placed). It has black tapes in its edge, narrow in the Irish version, wide tapes in the Canadian version.

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