Afghan hats

This article is also available in: Italiano

After the suits, here are the 5 typical men’s hats of Afghanistan, often worn by some of the central figures in the history and politics of the country.

The Afghan hats:

Pakol

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Ahmad Shah Mansour, thanks to him Pakul enjoyed enormous popularity

A type of traditionally woolen headdress, probably arrived in Afghanistan following the troops of Alexander the Great. In fact, it seems that the latter wore the causia, a hat originally from Greece which, in these lands, still survives today. It soon became a symbol of Nurestan, then expanding its range to Tajiks and Pashtuns, thanks also to Ahmad Shah Massoud, the legendary Afghan leader who used to wear it.

Peshawar turban

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Peshawar turban

Turban of ancient tradition, dating back to the ancient Indian empire of Gandhara. It consists of two pieces: the kulla and the lungi; the first is often decorated and forms the “base” of the headdress, the second creates the “fan” called turra and the “tail” called shamla. Particularly typical of the Pashtuns, so much so that it was used for a long time just to show its belonging.

Mazari

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Manzoor activist Ahmad Pashteen with the mazari

Hat originally from Mazar-i-Sharif, in Afghanistan, it stands out for the Rossoneri patterns, typical of this area. Always associated with the Hazara, a population descended from the soldiers of Genghis Khan, it has recently become popular also among the Pashtuns thanks to the human rights activist Manzoor Ahmad Pashteen.

Sindhi topi

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The Sindhi topi

Originally from the province of Sindh, Pakistan, it quickly spread also among the Saraiki of Punjab, the Baloch and the Pashtuns. Together with the Ajrak shawl, it is part of the nationalism of the Sindh people, proud of the extraordinary artifacts they manage to grow to create. Very similar in shape to the taqiyah of the Arab-Islamic world, it is distinguished by a characteristic split on the forehead. Traditionally considered “the Hat”, it is often richly decorated with embroidery and with the insertion of small mirrors.

Karakul

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Hamid Karzai with his karakul

The classic triangular wool hat comes from Kabul and takes its name from the legendary Karakul sheep, typical of the Turkestan area. Precisely by virtue of the Mongol and Turkish conquests, this headdress then spread throughout southern and central Asia, soon becoming a symbol of power. It is no coincidence that it was worn by most of the Afghan royal family, as well as becoming one of the symbols of former president Hamid Karzai.

Tomorrow an italian podcast dedicated to Galata, Italian foot in Istanbul and the article with the basics of Afghan carpets (which should have been released today but we were bewitched by the hats), do not miss them.

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