Wednesday, June 11, 2008

WHO INVENTED GRADUATION HATS KNOWN OFFICIALLY AS MORTARBOARDS?



Ever wondered who invented graduation hats and why are they shaped so weird?

While the exact inventor of this hat is unknown, the hat, along with most of the traditional academic dress originates in the 12th and 13th centuries. Today's graduation cap and gown began as the everyday wear of medieval scholars. The hard, square graduation hat is commonly called a mortarboard, although the British prefer the term "trencher." This hat seems to be a descendant of the medieval biretta or pileus -- a soft, square cap with a tuft on top. Over the centuries, clergymen, doctors, and eventually candidates for bachelor's degrees wore a form of this hat. According to one humorous website, the FAQ regarding academic costume, the four points of the mortarboard might represent "the foundational subjects of the scholastic curriculum: Music, Mathematics, Astronomy, and Theology, which are collectively known as the Quadrivium." But no one knows for sure.

1 comment:

Ali said...

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why are graduation hats square