Pants In A Time Of Scarcity
It’s then something catches your eye – dark shadows flitting from tree to tree at the edge of the forest a hundred feet or more away. You tell yourself it’s just a trick of the light but seconds later several of the shadows break away from the tree line and start making their way towards the village. Kobolds! You have to get back before them. You tighten the laces of your trousers and begin to sprint.
These loose cut, drawstring waist and cuff, cotton peasant pants are made to combine well with tunics, jackets, and even gambeson and other types of armor from a huge range of historical and fantasy settings. The two pockets included may not be period-correct but are convenient for busy adventurers and enthusiasts. The drawstring waist allows for a good amount of adjustability.
Baggy clothing was one way to flaunt wealth. Using more fabric than was necessary to complete your clothing showed that you had surplus wealth to spend on such things. This didn’t apply to men’s pants for most of the medieval period, however. Loose-fitting, peasant pants like this usually indicated that you were wearing hand-me-downs, adjusted to fit you. These particular peasant pants would make an excellent choice for a down-on-their-luck rogue or warrior, who perhaps lost their best clothing on their last adventure.
Peasant Pants – Versatility +1
Every great character idea and costume needs a humble starting point. These peasant pants are a great way to open up a variety of possibilities for roleplay and reenactment. A simple, archetypal design and natural, muted colours mean they can work in a near-limitless number of settings. We can see them on a tired Sword Coast mercenary, stopping at Candlekeep to fodder her horse and ask for work, on a swordmaster, working the forms with his young, noble apprentice in the towers of King’s Landing, or on a thief, stalking across the rooftops of Novigrad in search of an easy mark. Simple yet universal pieces like this can be a great way to get the imagination working while starting out your character ideas.
What Did It Mean To Be A Peasant?
Internet culture occasionally throws the word around as an insult but what did it truly mean to be a “peasant”. Well, under Medieval Feudalism, it depended on which of the three categories of peasant you fell under. Slaves, serfs and free tenants lived under very different conditions. Of course, slaves had it the worst. Conflicts like the Byzantine-Ottoman conflict resulted in a huge taking of Christian slaves. Slavery had largely disappeared from Byzantine civilisation in the 7th century and around the 10th century in Europe we see a shift towards serfdom. A serf was a kind of indentured servant which in some cases differed very little from slavery. Unlike slaves, serfs couldn’t be bought, sold, or traded, though they could be sold along with the land under certain conditions. Free tenants (or free peasants) were much rarer and more difficult to pick apart. They often paid low rents to their manorial lord, enough that they could establish some wealth, could marry without permission, and couldn’t be sent to a different estate against their will.
The Typical Situation
Usually, peasants paid their rent in the form of labour, goods, or cash to a lord or bishop. In return, the peasant could cultivate the land to feed their family (and possibly have some surplus to trade). The living conditions of the average peasant varied from place to place. Conditions improved significantly after the plague when the drop in population made it easier to support people off the land.
Complete the kit! We recommend pairing these trousers with the Medieval Ankle Boots and the Peasant Shirt.
Material: Peasant pants are 100% Cotton
- Kids S: Up to a 27 Inch Waist
- Kids M: Up to a 29 Inch Waist
- X-S: Up to a 32 Inch Waist
- S: Up to a 37 Inch Waist
- M: Up to a 38.5 Inch Waist
- L: Fits up to a 45 Inch Waist
- X-L: Fits up to a 49 Inch Waist
- XX-L: Fits up to a 56 Inch Waist
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