Advocacy certainly is not the brightest of the professions. Well, the “noble profession” is clad in black and white, unlike its many other colourful counterparts. A visit to any court of law in India will make you see men and women, roaming around wearing clothes that neither have any utility nor any comfort. The origin of the lawyer’s robes can be traced back the medieval times wherein all men of learning used to don robes. The robes then were brightly coloured and used to be closed at the front.

With the death of Charles II in 1865, came the period of mourning in England. Looks like the mourning is continuing till date, at least in our beloved profession as the customary dress has not changed in 152 years. Without the baggage of a royal mourning, lawyers in countries like France bright red/maroon robes.

However, it is not that we Indians have just copied the Englishs’ ways. The Bar Council of India Rules do allow Indian dresses like Sherwani and Dhoti to be worn by lawyers in Court.

In the next post, we will trace the challenges that the system of dresses has seen. Have  the challenges been challenging? Thankfully, both lawyers and judges in India can scratch their heads without taking off their wigs.



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