views updated May 29 2018

Vestments. The liturgical dress of the Christian clergy. It derives not, as formerly believed, from the vestments of the ancient Jewish priesthood, but mainly from the secular dress of Roman antiquity retained inside the Church.


In the Orthodox E., the vestments evolved in a parallel way, and correspond mostly to those of the W. The vestments of the priest are the sticharion, epitrachelion, girdle, epimanikia, and phainolion. Bishops wear the sakkos, omophorion, and epigonation. There are no special liturgical colours.


views updated Jun 27 2018

vest·ment / ˈves(t)mənt/ • n. (usu. vestments) a chasuble or other robe worn by the clergy or choristers during services. ∎ archaic a garment, esp. a ceremonial or official robe.