View Full Version : Friday Trivia: Briefs

Star lover
June 1st, 2018, 07:20 AM
The first men's "briefs" were sold at Marshall Field & Company department store in Chicago in January 1935.

Inspired by French men's bathing suits, the supportive undergarments made by the Cooper Underwear Company of Kenosha, Wisconsin, sold out immediately and became even more popular when a distinctive Y-front design was introduced.

Coopers kept making and marketing its wildly successful underwear, and in 1971 the company changed its name to Jockey.

Because the briefs mimicked the fit of athletic supporters, they became known as Jockey shorts.

Babe Ruth was among the first group of celebrities chosen to endorse them.

The first known underwear dates back almost 7000 years, when prehistoric man used leather to cover and protect his loins while running prehistoric errands. For several millennia, not much changed. Ancient Egyptian art shows everyone from the pharaohs on down the line decked out in loincloths of their own. The pharaohs even wore a sort of specialized kilt/loincloth called a shendoh, and took extra supplies of the garment into their pyramids for use in the afterlife.

Variations on the loincloth seem to have persisted into the Middle Ages, when loose-fitting trousers called braies came into fashion. These linen duds extended from the waist to around mid-calf, and once the wearer stepped into his breeches he had to lace them tight around his waist and shins. Although all of the tying wasn't so convenient, these braies had the advantage of offering a lot of coverage, so if a laborer got too hot he could strip down to his skivvies while still maintaining some sense of decorum.


On the other hand, all of the lacing and cinching made answering nature's call a bit of a hassle. Enter the codpiece. A codpiece that opened at the front using buttons, snaps, or laces enabled men to urinate without removing their braies, which really came in handy when you'd had a bit too much mead.

These early codpieces were practical, but as hemlines rose, they started to take on a decorative function, too. Codpiece continued throughout the mid-sixteenth century before tailing off around 1590.

From Victorian times into the 1930s, men had mostly worn tight-fitting knee-length flannel "drawers" beneath their pants and donned similarly snug flannel tops as undershirts.


This state of affairs doesn't sound too comfy, but things got a little more breathing room in 1925. Jacob Golomb, the founder of the venerable boxing equipment company Everlast, started to tweak designs for the trunks worn by pugilists. Golomb realized that the leather-belted trunks fighters had been wearing weren't totally ideal, so he replaced the leather with more flexible elastic waistbands.

Boxer shorts weren't an immediate success as underwear, though. They lacked the support that drawers and union suits had offered, so men weren't crazy about them. It really wasn't until after World War II that boxer shorts took off to challenge the brief.

......They've come along way baby!.......

June 1st, 2018, 08:56 AM
Interesting. I would of thought the first store would of been Woolworths. It might sound boring, but I read a book on the history of Woolworths. When I was taking care of my aunt it was at the house. All I could think of was Hello Dolly. lol

June 1st, 2018, 09:21 PM
Because of a mishap one time on vacation I had to wear a pair of my husbands briefs. They were sort of baggy in the front but the heavy knit was surprisingly comfortable.

Caroline T.
June 2nd, 2018, 12:45 AM
Because of a mishap one time on vacation I had to wear a pair of my husbands briefs. They were sort of baggy in the front but the heavy knit was surprisingly comfortable.
Men's boxers make for wonderful summertime pj bottoms. I've been known to "accidently" buy him a package of them that were too small, oops, guess I got new pj bottoms & ssshhhh don't tell.