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Are modern underpants really shown in medieval French church window?

The Troyes tourist board had initially joked that a pair of men's briefs were added to the stained glass window during restoration

The figure on the right in a depiction of the crucifixion in the Saint-Nizier church in Troyes seems to be wearing a pair of ‘slip kangourou’ Pic: Troyes La Champagne Tourisme

A stained-glass window in a 16th Century church has attracted attention after the local tourist board suggested it depicts modern men’s underwear, centuries in advance.

The figure on the right in a depiction of the crucifixion in the Saint-Nizier church in Troyes seems to be wearing a pair of slip kangourou

These are a type of stretchy men’s pants with a pocket in the front, invented in 1927 by French industrialist André Gillier and first made in Troyes. 

Read more: France wants to restore its village churches… but who is going to pay?

Tourist board made up the anecdote 

Troyes La Champagne tourist board drew attention to the underwear in a Facebook post.

It claimed that, during modern restoration work on the window, which was built between 1505 and 1510, one of the glassmakers had included the pants as a nod to the town’s history for making hosiery.

Sadly, while the anecdote about the slip kangourou is amusing, there is no truth to it.

“The glassmakers did not change the design,” said tourist board events manager Apollonia Gontero.

“The slip really is original and isn’t linked to Troyes’ hosiery. It’s just a coincidence.”

Before the slip kangourou, most French men wore high-waisted briefs with no opening and little elasticity. 

French words for men’s underwear

A common French word for men’s underwear, le slip, should not be confused with the English slip or petticoat. 

Other words for men’s underwear include un caleçon, le boxer and les sous-vêtements

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