Hun Clothing

Sources from the time period state that the Huns were unkempt and barbaric in appearance. However, one must remember that the main source of information came from the Romans who were quite biased about the Huns. Huns wore pants made out of skins. Depending on which translation you agree with, the skins were either goat hide or ibex hide. Tunics of poor Huns were made out of marmot skins sewn together. Rich Huns wore better quality furs. Huns also had access to cloth such as linen and nobles would stitch small gold plaques or pendants to their garments. Hats were made out of hide and were pointed. Boots were made of sheepskin.

All types of adornment were used by the Huns. As a nomad society, wealth had to be displayed in a way that was easily transported. Jewelry and saddle decorations were common. Gold was the favored metal and coins were melted down to make small plaques of animals and geometric designs to sew onto clothing. Beads were made from coral, carnelian, mother-of-pearl, quartz, pyrite, lapis lazuli, Egyptian paste, amber, lignite, stone, clay, and glass. Beads were traded from all over. Hun women loved intricate embroidery that used beads to decorate their clothing. Tombs have been unearthed showing even the poorest of Hun women had beads adorning the sleeves and collars of their tunics as well as their shoes and the lower part of their trousers.

Photo above left: A pair of Kyrgyz leather pants that are embroidered. These pants are the same cut and style as Hunnic garments.

Photo above right: Huns wore pointed hats made of hide

Photos left and right: Hunnic belt buckles from the 5th century A.D.

Gilt bronze
Solid oval loop tapering towards the plate. Tongue has a step above the hook; plate folded around loop, secured by two rivets. Front plate, tongue and loop are gilt. 1.2(3.0cm).

Gilt bronze, solid oval loop tapering towards the plate. Tongue has a step above the hook around the loop; gold plate folded around the loop, secured by rivets. Front plate set with two garnets forming a heart. 1.4(3.5cm).

Above: A Hun coat from 3rd to 4th century A.D. This coat is made of leather and fur. During winter, Huns would wear two coats- the inner coat would be worn with the fur facing inside and the outer coat would be worn with the fur facing out.

Below: Ornaments found in archaeological sites in Bulgaria. Ornaments such as these were used by rich Hun nobles to decorate their clothing. Like the Scythians before them, Huns preferred gold, but bronze could also be used.

Hun women adorned their clothes with intricate embroidery and beadwork. Beads were made from stone and glass and were acquired from both trading and raiding. Women would adorn themselves, their horses, and their weapon scabbards with golden ornaments as well.