kerchief

1) A cloth used to cover the head, formerly a woman’s head-dress.

1317 ‘to be taken for ... stealing ... a courechef worth 7˝d’, Rastrick

1454 j kirchiff de Paryss, Whitkirk

1545 Item, to Percivall my sonnes wif a whit reban, a kirchif and a neckerchif, Farnley near Otley

1585 Item to Richard Nelson wife a kirchife that is on her head, South Cave. A wide variety of variant spellings has been recorded: 1535 to Elizab. Thomlynson j curtchif , Ripon

1540 to every wyffe ... a kertshowe, Yafforth

1550 to everye of them a curtcher, Richmond

1561 Item iij kochers with iij rayless ijs ixd, South Cave

1642 Scotch-cloath ... much used here for womens-handkerchers and pocket-handkerchers, Elmswell. Note: 1379 Isabella Kierchiefwassher, Kirkby Malzeard.

spellings kocher kirchief kertshowe curtchif curtcher courechef
dates 1317 1379 1454 1535 1540 1545 1550 1561 1585 1642

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Photo by Kreuzschnabel CC BY-SA 3.0