Cost of Living in Egypt

Children in Modern Egypt By Catherine C. Harris. Children in Egypt have much in common with children in the United States. They are required to go to school, they must observe family rules, they enjoy popular foods, and they recognize fashion trends.

Relatively few women are elected to Parliament, though there are always some. Copy code to clipboard. Marriage to cousins, however, remains frequent, accounting for 39 percent of marriages in a sample. Newer apartments, however, are not under rent control, and rents are much higher.

In modern times, the presence of both Muslims and Christians has impeded the drive to define Egypt as a Muslim country and thus at least indirectly has favored secularism. Rituals and Holy Places. Rituals marking the different stages of life are also an important area of religious practice, and one that is largely shared by Muslims and Christians.
Modern Egypt, due to cultural diffusion from Saudi Arabia creating different ideas about women and making them wear clothing so that they would be covered so that only their eyes are shown because they are considered to be a temptation to men only.
Ancient Egyptian clothes refers to clothing worn in ancient Egypt from the end of the Neolithic period to the collapse of the Ptolemaic Kingdom with the death of Cleopatra in 30 BCE. Egyptian clothing was filled with a variety of colors. Adorned with precious gems and jewels, the fashions of the ancient Egyptians were made for not only beauty but also .
Ancient Egyptian-inspired fashion. Find this Pin and more on BC - BC: Egyptian/Iron Age by Michelle Winchester. Costumes History in a Nutshell: Ancient Egypt The shenti - Egyptian male dress Ancient Egyptian-inspired fashion: Most garments in this period were made of linen, usually white or transparent, sometimes .
Why Is Egypt Obsessed With Women’s Clothes? Archive Image: Chris Hondros/Getty Images In recent months, there have been a plethora of stories emerging from Egypt, in which women’s clothing and bodies have been policed.
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Life in modern Egypt is both modern and traditional. In the big cities, such as Cairo, you will see people wearing jeans and sneakers as well as more traditional dress. Clothing in Egypt is generally conservative because followers of Islam obey rules that require shoulders and knees of all people to be covered.

In general, men and women have equal legal rights. But equality is not determined only by law. For example, the principle of equal pay applies only in the formal sector.

Women working in the informal sector are often paid less than men. Women do not have the same legal rights as men in the domain of personal status marriage, divorce, child custody. Only Egyptian men have the right to pass on Egyptian nationality to their children. Various feminist and human rights groups, however, are active in promoting legal change in areas of discrimination against women. At home men have more power than women, and are supposed to make the major decisions.

Nevertheless, women have much influence and informal power. One of the critical decisions a woman can make is the choice of marriage partner. The pattern here is one of negotiation among the members of her family about whom she will marry. She is a participant, and must in some sense agree, but many others are involved, including matchmakers. Similarly a young man may find constraints on his choice of marriage partner.

The trend is for marriage partners to be increasingly more like one another in age and level of education. The old hierarchical marriage is giving way to a companionate marriage, especially in the urban middle classes.

Marriage to cousins, however, remains frequent, accounting for 39 percent of marriages in a sample. Since premarital sex is rare, the pressure to marry is high, and almost everyone marries. The actual marriage ceremony is distinct from the legal contract of marriage.

It is a major event in the lives of all involved. The young couple must prepare a place to live, while at the same time seeing that the often considerable costs of the ceremony are covered. People spend as much as they can, if not more, on a marriage, and in the upper classes, the sky is the limit. Polygyny having more than one wife among Muslims is rare, and declining.

Around 5 percent of Muslim men have more than one wife, and most of them only two. A polygynous man usually maintains two households. Divorce is formally easy though families try to reconcile the partners. The rate of divorce is declining, while the absolute number is increasing. When a divorced couple has children, the mother retains custody only while they are young. The father may then claim them. Copts recognize neither polygyny nor divorce. An important signal of family identity is the personal name.

Egyptians frequently do not have "family" names in the current Western sense of a last name that is shared by all members of an extended family.

Instead, each person has a given name, followed by the given names of his or her father, grandfather, and so on. For legal purposes one's name is usually "given name, father's name, grandfather's name," resulting in three given names e. Thus one carries one's paternal lineage and one's status in one's name. In certain parts of rural Egypt, where genealogy is important, people learn to recite a long list of paternal ancestors.

Muslim men are likely to have religious names but some have secular names. Christians may carry the names of saints, or may be given names that are Arabic rather than religious. Women also have religious names but sometimes have more fanciful ones, including names of foreign origin. Women often do not change their names upon marriage. Although most households now are organized around a nuclear family, there are some extended family households.

Marriage was historically patrilocal brides moved to the household of the husband , though in cities the young couple often establishes a new residence, at least after a couple of years. Even when residence is not shared, extensive kin ties are maintained through frequent family gatherings. Authority tends to be patriarchal, with the senior male in the household generally given the last word and otherwise expecting deference. Wives, for instance, often are reluctant to assert that they have any serious independent power to make decisions.

Islamic law requires partible inheritance. The property of a dead person must be divided among the heirs, usually children and surviving spouse. Male heirs are favored over female heirs by receiving a share that is twice as large. Moreover, any group of heirs should include a male, even if that means tracking down a distant cousin. A person may not dispose of more than one-third of his or her estate by will, and may not even use this provision to favor one legal heir over another.

In other words, a person cannot will this one-third to one son at the expense of another, but could will it to a charity or a nonrelative. Use of this provision is rare, as people accept the Islamic rules and prefer to keep property in the family.

Arrangements among heirs, particularly brothers and sisters, however, may result in a different outcome. For instance, a father may set up his daughter in marriage in lieu of an eventual inheritance. Egyptian kinship is patrilineal, with individuals tracing their descent through their fathers.

Child Rearing and Education. In all parts of Egypt and among all social classes, having children is considered the greatest blessing of all. Caring for children is primarily the women's responsibility.

Many Egyptian women both Copt and Muslim abide by the Koranic directive to breast-feed children for two years. Grandparents and other members of the extended family play an active role in bringing up children. There is a general preference for boys over girls, although in infancy and early childhood children of both sexes are treated with equal love and care. The preference to have at least one son is related to the desire to have an heir, and so provide continuity from father to son.

Education is highly valued in Egypt, and families invest a lot in that area. Even low-income families try to educate their children as much as possible. Education, especially having a university degree, is considered an important avenue for social mobility.

But many families cannot afford to educate their children beyond the elementary level. In addition, many children have to work at an early age to help support their families. Public modesty in dress and deportment is highly valued in Egypt. There is a form of dress code that affects women more than men, and that requires clothing that covers all the body but the hands and face.

For women, this most visibly means wearing a head scarf that covers the hair and ears and is pinned under the chin, though there are many other styles ranging from simply covering the hair to covering the entire face. This is the sense in which veiling exists in Egypt, but the situation is volatile, with a good deal of variety. Many women do not veil at all. What is proper, or required, or necessary, is hotly debated in contemporary Egypt. The motivations for veiling are numerous, and range from those who accept that this is a requirement of Islam to those who cover themselves essentially to satisfy their relatives, male and female.

Men are also enjoined to dress modestly, but the changes are not as striking, involving for instance loose trousers and long sleeves.

For both men and women, the principle is that clothes should disguise the shape of the body. Another rule of etiquette is that greetings must precede all forms of social interaction. A person joining any kind of group, even of strangers, is expected to greet those already present. In less anonymous situations handshakes are due.

Embracing is also common as a form of greeting, usually among members of the same sex. People are generally addressed by their given name, often preceded by a title of some kind ' am, or uncle, is the all-purpose title for men; others include hajj for a pilgrim returned from Mecca or simply for an older man, duktor for a person with a doctorate, and muhandis for an engineer.

To address someone by name alone is impolite. One important rule of etiquette is to treat guests cordially and hospitably. An offering, usually tea or a soft drink, is the least a visitor expects. The first drink is sometimes called a "greeting. In rural areas, some people avoid visiting those they consider to be of lower status than themselves. From this point of view, visits are always "up," and hospitality is always "down," i.

In general, young defer to old and women to men. Members of the younger generation are expected to show signs of respect and not to challenge their seniors and must use the special terms of address for aunts, uncles, and grandparents, as well as for older nonrelatives. Juniors should not raise their voices to elders, nor should they remain seated while an older person is standing up.

With increasing disparities between classes and the spread of patronage ties, there is an inflation in deferential terms of address. This includes the resurgence in the use of terms that were previously official titles but were abolished after , such as Pasha and Bey. Egypt is a country of "everyday piety. The statement of this basic profession of faith is one of the five pillars of the religion. The other four are the Ramadan fast, the pilgrimage to Mecca, the five daily prayers, and the giving of alms.

For many Muslims these five pillars sum up the belief system and indicate the practices. Egyptians frequently invoke the notion of God and his power. Any statement about the future, for instance, is likely to contain the injunction, "God willing," showing that the ultimate determination of the intention is up to God.

In Egypt, there are other possible elaborations. For some, who focus on God as all-powerful, religious practice involves seeking God's help in over-coming problems and seeking favorable outcomes, for instance, with regard to recovery from disease or misfortune. Around this notion has grown up a series of practices involving visits to shrines, often The Egyptian Museum in Cairo features artifacts from the tombs of pharaohs.

Foremost among these shrines are those in Cairo associated with the family of the prophet Muhammad. But every village and town has such shrines, whose importance varies. This form of religion is often attacked by religious purists who argue that to give such importance to these "saints" undercuts the oneness of God. Also very common in Egypt are associations of mystics Sufi brotherhoods. These male-dominated groups are under the leadership of a shaykh , or a hierarchy of shaykhs, devoted to helping their members attain a mystical experience of union with God.

This mystical experience is often attained through collective rituals, proper to each order, called zikr. There are nearly one hundred officially recognized associations, plus numerous unrecognized ones, and they claim around six million members about one third of the adult male population. Current mainstream practice in Egypt is to focus on the core beliefs of Islam, and to be concerned with learning the "law" of Islam, the particular details of everyday life that believing Muslims must follow to be in accord with God's will as interpreted by specialists.

The authority here is the word of God as found in the Koran. The prayer leader imam can be anyone in religious good standing, although established mosques usually have a regular imam. The Friday sermon is said by a khatib, many of whom are trained in religious institutes.

There have been debates over whether women can play these roles, especially that of a teacher of religion to women and girls. The two top religious leaders in Egyptian Islam are the Shaykh al-Azhar, who heads the religious bureaucracy, and the Grand Mufti, who offers authoritative interpretations of the Koran.

The individuals in these posts have been known to take different positions on some issues. The two main Muslim religious holidays are the feast following Ramadan, the fasting month, and 'Id al-Adha, which corresponds to the Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca. The Ramadan holiday comes after a month of fasting and family visits and people usually just rest. The 'Id al-Adha celebrates Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his son, who then miraculously turned into a ram, so that most families try to sacrifice a ram on this day.

Other religious holidays include Moulid an-Nabi, commemorating the birth of the prophet Muhammad, which is especially important for sufis; and Islamic New Year, the first day of the month of Moharram. In Islam, Friday is the day of the main congregational prayer, and marks a break in the workweek without being a "day of rest" in the formal sense. In contemporary Egypt, the two-day weekend is Friday and Saturday.

The regular work and school week is thus Sunday through Thursday, although some also work on Saturday. Christians who work on this schedule attend church in the evenings, and make use of Friday for major gatherings.

The Coptic Orthodox Church is the descendant of the churches associated with the early Christian Patriarchate of Alexandria. It is the main Christian church in Egypt. Its theology is monophysite, holding that in Jesus Christ there is only one nature, both human and divine.

The Coptic church is headed by a patriarch and supported by bishops and parish priests. Monasticism is also central to the Coptic church, and the patriarch comes from the ranks of the monks rather than the priests. When a patriarch dies, his successor is chosen by lot i. The monasteries also serve as pilgrimage and retreat centers for Copts.

Currently the Virgin Mary is revered, and many churches are dedicated to her. The two main Christian holidays are the Christmas season and the Easter season. Minor holidays include some that are extensions of these seasons such as 'Id al-Ghattas Epiphany , the baptism of Christ, Palm Sunday, and some associated with the Virgin Mary Ascension, in mid-August, is a main one. In most aspects of life apart from religion, Egyptian Muslims and Christians are indistinguishable.

Everyday devotion is common among both, and many religious values are shared at a general level. The attentive observer can sometimes note marks of distinction: For most people, most of the time, the distinction is not relevant. But every so often there are individuals on one side or the other who stress the difference and claim or practice some form of discrimination or injustice.

Such speech rarely leads to more violent action. Nonetheless, the boundary is maintained and both groups discourage or prohibit intermarriage and conversion.

Muslims and Christians are not residentially segregated; instead, there are clusters of Christians scattered among a Muslim majority. In modern times, the presence of both Muslims and Christians has impeded the drive to define Egypt as a Muslim country and thus at least indirectly has favored secularism.

Rituals and Holy Places. Rituals marking the different stages of life are also an important area of religious practice, and one that is largely shared by Muslims and Christians. Egyptians celebrate a naming ceremony normally one week after a baby's birth; this is a mixture of Islamic or Coptic and "traditional" elements, and is basically a family celebration to incorporate the newborn into the family.

All boys are circumcised, generally as infants, and girls are usually also "circumcised" before they reach puberty. Although the form of female genital mutilation varies, surveys suggest that about 97 percent of Egyptian females, both Christians and Muslims, are affected.

Marriage is a major focus of Egyptian culture. For Muslims it is considered a contract the signing of which is later followed by a family celebration; for Christians the sacrament takes place in a church, usually followed the same day by a family celebration. Death and the Afterlife. After a death, both Muslims and Christians try to bury the body the same day. Condolences are paid immediately, and again after forty days and after a year. The Islamic condolence sessions are often marked by Koran reading.

The "soul" exists before birth and after death, while some of the other aspects disappear with death or only appear at death. Health care in Egypt occupies a central place both in people's concerns and in state priorities. There is an extensive network of public hospitals in major towns and cities all over the country.

There is a health unit offering basic medical services in practically every village. The standard of the medical service is variable, however, and people often find they have to obtain treatment in private hospitals and clinics. Among more affluent sectors of urban Egypt, people seek out alternative treatments such as homeopathy.

Egyptians tend to combine the modern health system with traditional practices. In villages, the midwife, for example, plays a key role not just during childbirth and the related ceremonial activities, but also in providing general medical advice to women.

There are other traditional health practitioners, such as seers and spirit healers. The zar ceremony marks a form of spirit possession cult that establishes a relationship between an afflicted person and the spirits afflicting him or her.

This Egyptians at a festival in Cairo. Many public Egyptian holidays mark important events in the recent political history of the country. The main public holidays are: Labor Day in Egypt as elsewhere is used to salute the working class.

The others mark important events in the recent political history of the country. All are official affairs, with little popular celebration. Nobel Prize-winning author Naguib Mahfouz b. Folk tales and folk epics survive but are not robust. Painters are largely self-supporting through the sale of their paintings.

There are many art galleries mostly concentrated in Cairo, and the acquisition of paintings has always been a sign of good taste and distinction among members of affluent social groups. Folk painting of house walls is well-known in rural Egypt.

The Egyptian film industry is one of the oldest in the world. Film production is at once an art, an industry, and a trade. Egyptian films and television dramas are avidly consumed not just in Egypt but all over the Arab world. They range from tacky melodramas to internationally acclaimed, award-winning films of high artistic value.

Film production is now almost exclusively in the private sector. The most famous Egyptian singer was Umm Kalthum d. Some more recent singers have also had considerable popularity inside and outside the country. There is also a Cairo Symphony Orchestra, a Cairo Opera Ballet, and other troupes producing classical music and dance.

There are thirteen government universities, some of which have multiple branches, enrolling about one million students. The much smaller American University in Cairo is an old private university, and there are several new ones. In general, the physical and social sciences are confined to academic departments of the various universities, and to state-sponsored research centers.

There is now an increasing tendency to link scientific knowledge to social and economic demands, by emphasizing the "relevance" of such knowledge. Thus, the new Mubarak City for Scientists, which contains one institute for information technology and another for genetics, caters to the demands of industry. The need for research and development is accepted but the realization is more difficult. The main university subjects took shape at Cairo University in the s.

Economics is probably the best developed of the social sciences, and political science and psychology are making progress. Sociology was founded at Cairo in and is now found in most universities. The main centers for anthropology are Alexandria and the American University in Cairo. Anthropology is dominated by efforts to come to grips with contemporary patterns of change, often under the heading of development. The main thrust of anthropology in Egypt is not to improve cross-cultural understanding but instead to foster Egyptian development.

There are few positions in anthropology, so most trained anthropologists gradually become generalists in development. Honor and Poetry in a Bedouin Society , The Pure and Powerful: Studies in Contemporary Muslim Society , Growing Up in an Egyptian Village: Silwa, Province of Aswan , Mass Culture and Modernism in Egypt , Islam in Egypt Today: Social and Political Aspects of Popular Religion , Moulids, Saints, Sufis , The Fellahin of Upper Egypt: Bedouins, Settlers, and Holiday-Makers: Egypt's Changing Northwest Coast , The Voice of Egypt: Modesty, Privacy and Resistance , Cultural Communities and Change, pp.

Resettlement and Years of Coping , Continuity and Change in an Egyptian Community 2nd ed. Peaceful People , Islamic Preaching in Contemporary Egypt , Saint and Sufi in Modern Egypt: An Essay in the Sociology of Religion , Between Marriage and the Market: Intimate Politics and Survival in Cairo , Directions of Change in Rural Egypt , Ibrahim, Barbara, et al.

A National Survey of Egyptian Adolescents , Egypt, Islam, and Democracy , Gender, Infertility, and Egyptian Medical Traditions , The Nubians of West Aswan: Village Women in the Midst of Change , Sufism and Islamic Reform in Egypt: The Battle for Islamic Tradition , Struggle for Change in a Nubian Community: An Individual in Society and History , Gender, Sickness, and Healing in Rural Egypt , Egyptian Feminist , Ritual, Clientelism, and Legitimation in Northern Egypt , Heroic Poets, Poetic Heroes: The Ethnography of Performance , A Controversy Over the Nation's Image.

Putting Islam to Work: Education, Politics, and Religious Transformation in Egypt , Private Voluntary Organizations in Egypt: A Place to Live: Families and Child Health in a Cairo Neighborhood , Inside the Third World Village , Self-Made Destinies in Cairo , Alternative Names Official name: Arab Republic of Egypt Previously: The United Arab Republic.

History and Ethnic Relations Emergence of the Nation. Urbanism, Architecture, and the Use of Space Villages and cities are the two major settlement types. Food and Economy Food in Daily Life. Social Stratification Classes and Castes. Social Welfare and Change Programs Egyptian citizens are entitled to free education and health care, in addition to employment guarantees for graduates. Nongovernmental Organizations and Other Associations Egypt has a long tradition of voluntary associations.

Marriage, Family, and Kinship Marriage. Socialization Child Rearing and Education. Etiquette Public modesty in dress and deportment is highly valued in Egypt. Medicine and Health Care Health care in Egypt occupies a central place both in people's concerns and in state priorities. Secular Celebrations The main public holidays are: The Arts and Humanities Literature. The State of the Physical and Social Sciences There are thirteen government universities, some of which have multiple branches, enrolling about one million students.

Bibliography Abu Lughod, Lila. Mount Sinai , Colonising Egypt , Cairo, The City Victorious , Family in Contemporary Egypt , Earlier, I left a comment the said it has too much information Just returned from a 12 day tour of Egypt.

While there I attempted to determine Egyptian attutudes toward and treatment of the disabled. I had little success and often felt I was being fed the "official line". What I noticed most oten was the absence of disabled persons in public places. What are Egyptan cultural beliefs and behaviors toward disabled persons?

I need a master mind to help with this question. Please have the answer as soon as possible the longest i can wait is 30 minutes mabey an hour so please look or know the answer.

I really enjoyed this information.. I need to learn much more on how women need to act, as far as relations with other men , just having them for friends and why its not ok for a women to talk with other Egypt men. I am frome the U. Indeed, this article is quite informative. It helped me understand gender-related issues in relations to the Egyptian culture, which is considered one of the oldest cultures in human history.

I would also recommend that this ancient nation and culture acknowledges the home, where the men considerably have all the major decision-making powers! I am of the conviction that women make sound and major decisions as well and can provide better and transformation ideas, realizing the remarkably undeniable work of the women of Liberia during the civil war. I believe that if our generation begins to identify the errors of past generations, relative to gender-related issues, and if we address those issues in more formal ways by beginning to give women their rightful places in society; ensuring that opportunities and privileges are equally and equittably distributed, our world can be the most enjoyable place even for generations unborn.

In an effort to do this, we must begin with an identification of the problems as stated above, discuss them thoroughly as a way of enabling us to craft or design ideas that would amicably resolve them for the better of our general world, beginning with the Egyptian society.

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Women also dressed lightly, and they too often bared much of their upper body. The basic form of female clothing was a simple dress called a kalasiris. It was a tube of cloth, sewn along one side, with one or two shoulder straps.

In many cases the straps extended to mid torso, leaving the breasts exposed. Less common were The tomb of King Tutankhamen. Drawings in tombs like these helped archeologists learn what type of clothing Egyptians wore and what their daily life was like.

Reproduced by permission of. Some women wore wide skirts that they combined with a close-fitting wrap with long sleeves. During the reign of King Akhenaten, from about to about B. The single most important fabric in Egypt was linen.

Linen was made from the fibers of a plant called flax. Egypt had well-developed weaving techniques, and many Egyptian workers were involved in producing linen fabrics. It was a light fabric, which made it comfortable in hot weather. It was also easy to starch, or stiffen, into pleats and folds, which decorated the clothing of both men and women, especially beginning in the Middle Kingdom c.

Egyptians used a variety of colors in their clothing, and these colors had symbolic meanings. Blue, for example, stood for Amon, god of air; green represented life and youth; and yellow was the symbol of gold. Red, which symbolized violence, was seldom used, and black was reserved for the wigs worn by both men and women.

By far the most revered color was white. White was a sacred color among the Egyptians, symbolizing purity. Luckily, white was the natural color of flax. Another quality of linen that was particularly appealing was its thinness. Linen could be made so thin, or sheer, that it was transparent.

Egyptians were not modest and enjoyed showing off their bodies. Women and men are frequently depicted in hieroglyphs, or picture stories, wearing see-through garments. Our knowledge of Egyptian clothing has come almost entirely from studying the many hieroglyphs left in the tombs of kings and nobles. This has led some historians to question whether our knowledge of Egyptian clothing is based on reality or on idealized images.

It seems likely that hieroglyphs would offer the best possible picture of clothing, making the colors brighter and the fit more pleasing—like photos in a fashion magazine do today.


Feb 06,  · Female Attire: Although 90% of Egyptians are Muslim, the dress code that coincides with the religion is not enforced in Egypt. Despite this fact, modesty is still very important to Egyptians so many of the women wear clothes that . In smaller towns, most people wear clothing that falls past their knees and elbows, and women often cover their hair. In large cities like Cairo, people dress more like their counterparts in the United States or Europe. Since Egypt is a very hot place and is mostly desert, people tend to wear light, cotton clothing. Egypt is a big country. The Egyptian citizens share a common history, national identity, ethnicity, race, culture, and language. Clothing and apparel are very diverse in Lower and Upper Egypt. In Lower Egypt, Egyptians tend to wear comfortable, much-less-revealing Western clothes. In Upper Egypt, Egyptians wear more traditional clothes.

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