Ties Can Play at Spat's Game
March 2, 2005 4:25 AM   Subscribe

A Loosening of Ties by Willy J Spat. "For over two thousand years... the necktie... has been the most widely used, and the most multicultural of all phallic symbols." Neckties throughout the ages from invention to rebellion.
posted by nthdegx (20 comments total)
Thanks! A number of my friends have asked me about the history of the accursed tie. I just wish it had some formatting. There's nothing like trying to get through 1600 × 1200 of black and white text.
posted by Eideteker at 4:59 AM on March 2, 2005

Um, is it just me, or does anyone else think this would have been interesting if nthdegx had bothered to find a few other links to go with it?
posted by berek at 5:08 AM on March 2, 2005

I'm delighted, personally, that he didn't link to a Geocities site.
However, I'm also deeply unnerved by web pages with no pictures at all.

This post tears me in all directions.
posted by NinjaPirate at 5:14 AM on March 2, 2005

Yeah, cos I'm a right lazy bastard when it comes to finding links.

Sometimes, when there is a beautiful elegance to the link in question or, heaven forgive, I am pushed for time, I like to post one link only. What have you got, berek?
posted by nthdegx at 5:37 AM on March 2, 2005

The one link post thing is ok by me, but I don't know that I'd call that site elegant. Informative, sure.
posted by agentmitten at 5:43 AM on March 2, 2005

Elegant. Simple. Minimalist. Plain. Whatever. There's a certain vibe to certain links and I like it when a post follows suit. I know what I'm doing, in any case.
posted by nthdegx at 5:47 AM on March 2, 2005

posted by nthdegx at 6:06 AM on March 2, 2005

I wouldn't have minded so much if the orginal post had included some pictures and wasn't so god awfully formated.
posted by berek at 6:13 AM on March 2, 2005

...Pictures... right.
posted by nthdegx at 6:17 AM on March 2, 2005

lynx -dump http://fly.hiwaay.net/~jimes/necktie/spatHistory.html
Nice article and I don't get the formatting complaints. I found it very easy to read.

Personally, I've never seen neckties as a phallic symbol. More like a symbolic shackle, or leash, maybe. But mostly just another piece of cloth.
"You're a good man, Johnson, with a mighty cock around your neck." No, don't see it.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:24 AM on March 2, 2005

Hmm, and they accuse us womenof being obsessed with clothing?
posted by MadOwl at 7:07 AM on March 2, 2005

good post, thanks
posted by matteo at 7:45 AM on March 2, 2005

Personally, I've never seen neckties as a phallic symbol. More like a symbolic shackle, or leash, maybe. But mostly just another piece of cloth.

Yeah-- a cloth arrow pointing to the crotch.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 8:03 AM on March 2, 2005

I thought they were a noose, so your boss could strangle you real easy, if you stepped out of line.

OTH: I was quite aware that it was also an opportunity to be a bit more expressive than is normally allowed in what I love to call "office drag". (IANADQ)
posted by Goofyy at 8:28 AM on March 2, 2005

I always thought the necktie originated as a practical device to keep your shirt closed before lots of buttons, snaps or velcro were available for mass consumption. Shirts would be tied closed with a sash at the waist or maybe 3 buttons, but would fall open at the neck. "Tie"-ing the shirt closed at the top would produce a "neater" look and keep the wearer warmer too. The article seems to imply that this is not the case, but it's not definitive. Thoughts?
posted by nequalsone at 8:42 AM on March 2, 2005

this article seems more definitive on the history. Cravat from Croat from Croation mercenaries who wore colorful scarves... supports the idea that neckties came to Europe as a means of "dressing up" to make an impression, not for practical purposes...
posted by nequalsone at 8:53 AM on March 2, 2005

The same "Loosening of Ties" article is available elsewhere with slightly more readable formatting. On this site, though, don't miss the link to the second part of the article, which appears only at the top of the article.
posted by Lirp at 12:37 PM on March 2, 2005

You can loosen my tie when you pry it from my cold, dead neck... (Actually, I hardly every wear a tie but I love them).

I don't see the problem with posting a link to an ugly page, if it's interesting. And this was.
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 1:13 PM on March 2, 2005

Applause for the FPP link. It's like something Neal Stephenson would've written if he were more interested in the history of men's fashions.
posted by alumshubby at 3:24 PM on March 2, 2005

Neckties, elaborate collars, high ruffles, and a variety of other neck-covering fixtures have transcended thousands of years of male fashion across all the world's cultures. It is pretty well established as part of the masculine identity, as a symbolic if not literal armouring of one of the most vulnerable parts of the body. Indeed it seems to be a hold-over from the animal kingdom -- many species have elaborate hides around the neck area to give the impression that they're better protected than they are (think of the lion's mane).
posted by randomstriker at 3:45 PM on March 2, 2005

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