How do we dress?

As a son, you wrote to me that some asked you what the law means when it calls an abomination those who dress in the clothes of the other sex, no matter if they are men or women, as it is written: `

A woman must not wear men’s clothing, nor a man wear women’s clothing, for the Lord your God detests anyone who does this. (Deuteronomy 22, 5).

In fact what it is inappropriate comes against nature. Why do you want, man, to seem not what you were born? Why to adopt a strange look? Why lying that you are a woman or you as a woman that you are a man? Nature dresses everyone with the clothes which are suitable for him.

Different are the habits, the movements, the face, the walk, the powers, the voice of a woman from a man`s

But even at other species of creatures different is the look of the lion from that of the lioness, different is the power and the roar. Different are the bulls from the calves. At deers the differences between sexes is so big that you can tell from a distance which one is a deer and which one is a doe.

At birds the distinction is made more after clothing like at people. Their natural clotjing shows their sex. The peacocks are handsome and their females are not, their color and the beauty of their feathers look differently.

The pheasants show their sexual difference in the color of their feathers too. What to say about hens? How loud is the cry of the rooster, a real gift in the night for the wake we need. Do all these change their appearance?

Why do we wish to change it? The Greek habit came into use, with women wearing short tunics like the men. Let`s say that they, by imitating the men, want to appear stouter, but why do the men want to have a false look? The lie in word is abominable and it is even more in clothing.

Excerpt from Saint Ambrosius of Milan, Letters, the LXIX letter 1-6, in Church Fatjers and Writers (1994), vol. 53.

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