"Een vrouw mag geen kleren en attributen van een man dragen en een man mag geen vrouwenkleren dragen. Want de HEER verafschuwt ieder die zulke dingen doet." Deut. 22:5

"Ook wil ik dat de vrouwen zich waardig, sober en ingetogen kleden. Ze moeten niet opvallen door een opzichtige haardracht, dure kleding, goud of parels, maar door goede daden, zoals gepast is voor vrouwen die zeggen dat ze God vereren." 1 Tim. 2:9,10

"Uw schoonheid moet niet gelegen zijn in uiterlijkheden, zoals kunstig gevlochten haar, gouden sieraden of elegante kleding, maar in wat verborgen ligt in uw hart, in een zacht en stil gemoed." 1 Pet. 3:3,4


By no manner of means are women to be allowed to uncover and exhibit any part of their person. Otherwise, both may fall—the men by being excited to look; the women, by drawing to themselves the eyes of the men. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.246.

Much more must we keep pure from shameful deeds. On the one hand, we must keep from exhibiting and exposing parts of the body that we should not. And on the other hand, we must keep from looking at what is forbidden. . . . Now, the knee and leg, and such other members, are not obscene; nor are the names applied to them. In fact, the activity put forth by them is not obscene. And even the genitals are to be regarded as objects suggestive of modesty, not shame. It is their unlawful activity that is shameful. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.251.

Let [married women] be fully clothed: by garments on the outside and by modesty on the inside. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.252.

Handmaids of the living God, my fellow-servants and sisters, the right that I enjoy with you emboldens me to address to you a discourse. However, I am the lowest in that right of fellow-servantship and brotherhood. . . . Salvation consists in the exhibition principally of modesty. I say this not only of women, but likewise of men. For . . . we are all the “temple of God.” Tertullian (c. 198, W), 4.18.

Most women . . . have the boldness to walk as if modesty consisted only in the bare integrity of the flesh and in turning away from actual fornication. . . . They wear in their gait the same appearance as do the women of the nations, from whom the sense of true modesty is absent. . . . In short, how many women are there who do not earnestly desire to look pleasing even to strangers? Who does not on that very account take care to have herself painted out, yet denying that she has ever been an object of carnal appetite? Tertullian (c. 198, W), 4.18, 19.

Let a holy woman, if naturally beautiful, give no one such a great occasion for carnal lust. Certainly, if even she is beautiful, she should not show off [her beauty], but should rather obscure it. Tertullian (c. 198, W), 4.20.

To blush if he sees a virgin is as much a mark of a holy man, as of a holy virgin if seen by a man. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.28.

The dress of a modest woman should be modest. A believer should not be conscious of adultery even in the mixture of colors.
Novatian (c. 235, W), 5.591, formerly attributed to Cyprian.

However, these things [i.e., adornments] are not necessary for modest women. Pierce your breast with chaste and modest feelings. . . . Wear the necessary clothes that the cold or the heat (or too much sun) demand, and so you may be approved as modest. . . . You married women, flee from the adornment of vanity. Such attire is fitting for women who haunt the brothels. O modest women of Christ, overcome the evil one.
Commodianus (c. 240, W), 4.214.

But self-control and modesty do not consist only in purity of the flesh, but also in seemliness and in modesty of dress and adornment.
Cyprian (c. 250, W), 5.431.

© OTR 2023