For other meanings than clothing, see Coat (Disambiguation)
A coat (a term frequently interchangeable with jacket) is an outer garment worn by both men and women, for warmth or fashion. Coats typically have long sleeves and open down the front, closing by means of buttons, zippers, a belt, or a combination of these.
The term jacket is reserved for a hip-length or shorter garment, while coat can be used for a garment of any length.
1 History of the coat
2 Types of coats
2.1 Coats of the 18th and 19th centuries
2.2 Modern coats and jackets
4 External references
History of the coat
Coat is one of the basic clothing category words in English, attested as far back as the early middle ages. (See also Clothing terminology.)
An early use of coat in English is coat of mail, a tunic-like garment of metal rings, usually knee- or mid-calf length.
The medieval and renaissance coat (generally spelled cote by costume historians) is a midlength, sleeved men's outer garment, fitted to the waist and buttoned up the front, with a full skirt - in its essentials, not unlike the modern coat.
By the eighteenth century, coats had begun to supplant capes and cloaks as outer wear, and by the twentieth century the term jacket became interchangeable with coat for short garments.
Types of coats
Coats of the 18th and 19th centuries
Basque, a tightly fitted, kneelength women's jacket of the 1870s
Duster, a long coat of light-colored material worn by cattlemen and early automobile travelers to protect clothing from dust and dirt
Frock coat, a kneelength men's coat of the nineteenth century
Garibaldi jacket, a short, red women's jacket with military trim of the 1860s
Greatcoat, a voluminous overcoat with multiple shoulder capes worn by coachmen and the like
Morning coat or cutaway, a dress coat still worn as formal wear
Norfolk jacket, a sturdy wool jacket with a belt and box pleats front and back for hunting, fishing, and other outdoor sports
Redingote (via French from English riding coat), a long fitted coat for men or women
Smoking jacket, a men's informal jacket of luxurious fabric
Spencer, a waistlength, frequently doublebreasted, men's jacket of the 1790s, adopted as a women's fashion from the early nineteenth century
Tailcoat, a late eighteenth century men's coat preserved in today's white tie and tails
Modern coats and jackets
Anorak (in the United Kingdom) or parka (in the United States), a hooded jacket for very cold climates
Blazer, a nautically-inspired jacket for men or women
Bolero, a very short jacket, originally worn by matadors
Car coat, a hooded hip-length casual jacket inspired by the parka, popular in the 1960s
Dinner Jacket or Tuxedo, a men's coat for formal social occasions
Down coat, a warm coat insulated with goose down
Duffle Coat or duffel coat, a warm coat made of thick wool; usually having a hood and fastening with toggles
Eisenhower jacket, a waist-length, fitted, military-inspired jacket with a waistband based on the World War II Army "Wool Field Jacket, M-1944" introduced by General Dwight Eisenhower
Jeans jacket or denim jacket, a jacket falling slightly below the waist, usually of denim, with buttoned band cuffs like a shirt and a waistband that can be adjusted by means of buttons. Also called Levi's jacket (see Levi's)
Lab coat, a knee-length simple coat, almost always white, worn by scientists, students and researchers in laboratories.
Medical coat, similar to lab coat and is used by physicians
Mess jacket, a waist-length formal coat worn with some full-dress military uniforms
Motorcycle jacket, a leather jacket, usually black, worn by motorcycle riders
Opera coat, an ankle- or floor-length women's coat of luxurious fabric (often velvet), to be worn over an evening gown
Overcoat (also Topcoat), a tailored coat worn over a suit or dress
P Coat or pea coat, a heavy wool double-breasted hip-length jacket worn by sailors, or a coat styled like this
Raincoat, a water-resistant or water proof coat
Shooting jacket, a sportcoat with a leather patch on the front shoulder to prevent wear from the butt of a shotgun or rifle, frequently with matching leather patches on the elbows
Sportcoat, also a tailored garment, similar in cut to a suit coat, but less restrictive, originally of a sturdy fabric for hunting and other outdoor sports
Suit coat, the jacket portion of a men's tailored business suit or lounge suit
Trench coat, a military coat developed by Burberry, or any coat styled like this