DSC_0033_2134“Ze hemde und ze rocke/ diu himilische tocke / Hat eine suggeni / Diu kiusche und auch diu fin / und ein mantel iubir daz / Der hovelich gemachet was / und darob einen gürtel / diu reine gotis türtel / und an ir brust ein furspan / als der guoten wol gezam” (um 1300, Hugo von Langenstein, “Martina”, v. 55-64)

We would like to give you an overview over the development of Austrian fashion between 1310 and 1390.

A “typically” Viennese fashion seems to have been almost impossible to find from the beginning of the 13 century. The poet Seifried Helbling writes in 1290 that he is not happy about the strong influences from Bavaria, Saxony, Thuringia, Bohemia and Hungary which – according to him not only spoil the manners but also the decent clothing of the Viennese inhabitants. A farmer is no longer to be different from a knight, wearing venician gloves and dresses of all colours and qualities, not only wool and blue-greyish colours as he is allowed

Since sumptuary laws for Vienna are only known from the 15 century, and only a few fashion critical notes have been made by Austrian poets, we are mostly bound to original pictures from our region and comparisons with pictures and archeological finds of other european countries.

DSC_0025_2098_2130As comparison material we like to especially use sources from countries that had a strong economic influence on Vienna in the 14 century as for example Prague, Italy and Southern Germany.

If Viennese citizens were as luxury-loving as Helbling says, remains open, Heinrich der Teichner tells us similar stories from the time after the first wave of the plague 1349. Decadent striped and chequered fabrics as shown in “Heilsspiegel” for example, can also be found in archeological finds from London and Altenberg as well as in written sources from other european countries.

For the mediation of knowledge about Viennese clothing from the 14 century, we like to use original expressions from the time.



All our original pictures shown on this site are used with courtesy of the Instituts für Mittelalterliche Realienkunde Krems.


  • Die Manesse’sche Handschrift, Faks.-Ausg., Textbd.: Die Manessische Lieder-Handschrift / Einl. von Rudolf Sillib, Friedrich Panzer, Arthur Haseloff, Leipzig 1929
  • Die österr. Mode im 14. Jahrhundert nach den Gedichten Heinrich des Teichners. Dissertation von August Otto, Univ. Wien., 1935
  • Zeibig, Hartmann Joseph: Die kleine Klosterneuburger Chronik (1322-1428), Austr. 5238, Wien 1851
  • Gotik in Österreich, 19. Mai bis 15. Oktober 1967, Krems an der Donau. Ausstellungskatalog.
  • Karajan, Theodor Georg von (1855): Über Heinrich den Teichner, Kaiserlich-Königliche Hof- und Staatsdr. (Digitalisat)

further sources can be found in our section “Library”