Traditional Head Dresses for Women

The bank account and personal property of the village and Bedouin women in Palestine and Jordan is on her headdress.



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In Northern Palestine most village married women wear scarves (hattah) or trains (zurband) held in place with a headband (`asbeh), Druze women wear white veils only - and the Bedouin women wear dark blue or black veils. In the cities the veils are also black.

In some parts of Palestine, married women and widows wear a tarbush shaped hat covered in coins (shatweh). While to the north they wear a coin covered bonnet (smadeh) and another horseshow shape with more coins (saffeh).

The unmarried village girls wear a bonnet (malas). In some areas when the girls reach marriageable age they switch to a wuqa which is like a simple version of the smadeh - basically a bonnet with a few coins.

While unmarried Bedouin girls wear Hattah like a bag, married women roll it like a headband.

The most common headdress in Palestine is in the form of a bonnet with hair bands attached to the back. Coins are attached by a special embroideress to the sides, back and front of the bonnet. The headdress goes by different names in different areas such as: smadeh in Galilee and the coast, saffe and wegayeh in Ramallah, and araqqeyeh in Hebron.

The headdress in Bethlehem known as shatweh is in the shape of a man’s tarboush. It is made of padded and stiffened layers of broadcloth and linen. The front of the shatweh was covered with coins and coral. The back was embroidered. It is held on the head by a chin chain, znaq, called “Seven Souls”, that is attached on the sides.

In Jerusalem the headdress consists of a small embroidered round cap covered with coins and held on by a double chain znaq.



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