What You May Not Know About The Elizabethan Era

The Elizabethan era was an exquisite time during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I in the late 1550s.  The period lasted for 60 years and brought about an English renaissance in literature, poetry, and music.  Spirits were high and the era still lives on as the wardrobe and customs surface in Renaissance faires, media productions, and other events.  To take a further look into this time period, here are some interesting facts that may not be commonly found in the history books.

Queen Elizabeth: http://www.historicalclothingrealm.com/women-s-clothing-dresses-and-gowns.html


  •  You could say that Elizabeth I had a bit of a sweet tooth.  In fact, she ate so many sweet treats that her teeth rotted and eventually turned black.  To keep her from seeing this, servants kept mirrors far from her.
  • For the artists out there, you will notice that Elizabeth I is seen wearing big dresses with puffy sleeves in virtually every one of her portraits.  This apparel wasn’t exactly in fashion at the time, but she wore it to make herself look authoritative and powerful so she wouldn’t be taken advantage of as a woman.
  • Elizabeth I found a “face pattern” that she liked greatly in one of her portraits and as a result, all artists painted her face in the same way, thus giving her a young looking face in her portraits.  This is the image that most people have come to know and embrace even though it may not have been entirely accurate.


Elizabethan Leather Vest:

Elizabethan Leather Vest


  • Royal playing cards came into existence during the Elizabethan era when people began putting miniature portraits of royalty on them.  Considering the time period, it is no surprise that the Queen of Hearts was the most popular playing card, as it represented love for Queen Elizabeth I.
  • Count your blessings and be thankful that you didn’t grow up with the school schedule of the Elizabethan era!  Boys’ schools were in session six days a week year round.  There was no summer break; the only time off was for holidays.  They also went for 12 hours a day starting at 6:00 AM and ending at 6:00 PM.


English Renaissance clothing: http://www.historicalclothingrealm.com/men-s-clothing-shirts-and-tunics.html

Swordsman’s Shirt (inspiration drawn from Elizabethan era):

Swordsmans Shirt


  • As the Elizabethan era was the thriving time for Shakespeare, going to the theatre was quite popular.  Because women were not allowed to perform, men played all roles including the female ones.  Seeing as how there were no lights back in the day and theatrical performances were usually held outdoors, characters would tell the audience what time of day it was.
  • Because so many people wore wigs in the Elizabethan era, children out after dark would risk having their hair cut off for that purpose.
  • The eagle was considered a bird for royalty and only kings and queens could own them.

For our collection of Elizabethan clothing, hop on over to:  http://www.historicalclothingrealm.com/


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