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Why we wear kilts at Kelly O'Bryans!02/05/2017Vernon Kelly O'Bryan's

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Though the origins of the Irish kilt continue to be a subject of debate, current evidence suggests that kilts originated in the Scottish Highlands and Isles and were adopted by Irish nationalists at the turn of the 20th century as a symbol of Gaelic identity.

A garment that has often been mistaken for kilts in early depictions is the Irish lein-croich, a long tunic traditionally made from solid colour cloth, with black, saffron and green. Solid coloured kilts were first adopted for use by Irish nationalists and thereafter by Irish regiments serving in the British Army, but they could often be seen in late 19th and early 20th century photos in Ireland especially at political and musical gatherings, as the kilt was re-adopted as a symbol of Gaelic nationalism in Ireland during this period.

Having said that, there are still some people who claim that the kilt has been worn in Ireland as far back as the sixteenth century.

One of the most widely seen Irish kilts is of course the Saffron kilt, this particular kilt was first adopted by the Irish Regiments who served in the British army.

These Irish military kilts are still being worn today by the Royal Irish Rangers.

But Irish kilts are not only solid colours such as Saffron, indeed Irish tartans are becoming very popular.

Unlike Scottish tartans, which are associated with Scottish clans, Irish tartans are mostly associated with Irish Counties or Districts.

These tartans are a fairly new development, first produced in 1996 by a Scottish company, and aimed mostly at the Irish- American market.

So much so that these Irish tartans are virtually unknown and unobtainable in Ireland, indeed the kilt itself is still seen in Ireland as being primarily Scottish.

This may account for the fact that you will rarely if ever, see a kilt being worm on the streets of Ireland.

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