The scarlet gown is synonymous with student life in Scotland. Although its beginnings are mysterious, the purpose of this article is to shed some light on its origin and to describe its development through the centuries. We shall examine Scottish student dress in pre-Reformation times and briefly survey the early use of red student gowns in Europe. The history of the scarlet gown at each of the Scottish universities is treated in order of their foundation followed by a general section on headwear. We shall touch on the influence of the Scottish scarlet gown abroad and conclude with a section on its use in modern times. [Excerpt].

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