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kirtle 2 HENRY IV., ii. 4. 264; “half-kirtles,” 2 HENRY IV., v. 4. 22. “Few words have occasioned such controversy among the commentators on our old plays as this [kirtle]; and all for want of knowing that it is used in a two-fold sense, sometimes for the jacket merely, and sometimes for the train or upper-petticoat attached to it. A full kirtle was always a jacket and petticoat, a half-kirtle (a term which frequently occurs) was either the one or the other; but our ancestors, who wrote when this article of dress was every where in use, and when there was little danger of being misunderstood, most commonly contented themselves with the simple term (kirtle), leaving the sense to be gathered from the context.” Gifford's note on Jonson's Works, vol. ii. p. 260.

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