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Pajamas

Pajamas

Overview
Pajamas, also spelled pyjamas (see also spelling differences), can refer to several related types of clothing
Clothing
Clothing refers to any covering for the human body that is worn. The wearing of clothing is exclusively a human characteristic and is a feature of nearly all human societies...

. The original paijama are loose, lightweight trousers
Trousers
Trousers are an item of clothing worn on the lower part of the body from the waist to the ankles, covering both legs separately...

 fitted with drawstring
Drawstring
A drawstring is a string, cord, or rope used to "draw" or tie closed an opening in fabric or other material...

 waistbands and worn in South
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 and West Asia by both sexes. In many English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

-speaking nations, pajamas are loose-fitting, two-piece garments derived from the original garment and worn chiefly for sleeping
Nightwear
Nightwear, also called "sleepwear", "sleeping suit", "nightclothes", or "nightdress", is clothing designed to be worn while sleeping. The style of nightwear worn may vary with the seasons, with eg. warmer styles being worn in colder conditions...

, but sometimes also for lounging, also by both sexes.
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Encyclopedia
Pajamas, also spelled pyjamas (see also spelling differences), can refer to several related types of clothing
Clothing
Clothing refers to any covering for the human body that is worn. The wearing of clothing is exclusively a human characteristic and is a feature of nearly all human societies...

. The original paijama are loose, lightweight trousers
Trousers
Trousers are an item of clothing worn on the lower part of the body from the waist to the ankles, covering both legs separately...

 fitted with drawstring
Drawstring
A drawstring is a string, cord, or rope used to "draw" or tie closed an opening in fabric or other material...

 waistbands and worn in South
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 and West Asia by both sexes. In many English
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

-speaking nations, pajamas are loose-fitting, two-piece garments derived from the original garment and worn chiefly for sleeping
Nightwear
Nightwear, also called "sleepwear", "sleeping suit", "nightclothes", or "nightdress", is clothing designed to be worn while sleeping. The style of nightwear worn may vary with the seasons, with eg. warmer styles being worn in colder conditions...

, but sometimes also for lounging, also by both sexes. More generally, pajamas may refer to several garments, for both daywear and nightwear
Nightwear
Nightwear, also called "sleepwear", "sleeping suit", "nightclothes", or "nightdress", is clothing designed to be worn while sleeping. The style of nightwear worn may vary with the seasons, with eg. warmer styles being worn in colder conditions...

, derived from traditional pajamas and involving variations of style and material.

The word "pyjama" or "pajama", which originally derives from the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 word پايجامه (Peyjama meaning "foot garment"), was incorporated into the English language during British Raj
British Raj
British Raj was the British rule in the Indian subcontinent between 1858 and 1947; The term can also refer to the period of dominion...

 through the Hindustani
Hindustani language
Hindi-Urdu is an Indo-Aryan language and the lingua franca of North India and Pakistan. It is also known as Hindustani , and historically, as Hindavi or Rekhta...

 (the progenitor language of modern-day Urdu
Urdu
Urdu is a register of the Hindustani language that is identified with Muslims in South Asia. It belongs to the Indo-European family. Urdu is the national language and lingua franca of Pakistan. It is also widely spoken in some regions of India, where it is one of the 22 scheduled languages and an...

 and Hindi
Hindi
Standard Hindi, or more precisely Modern Standard Hindi, also known as Manak Hindi , High Hindi, Nagari Hindi, and Literary Hindi, is a standardized and sanskritized register of the Hindustani language derived from the Khariboli dialect of Delhi...

).

Traditional



Traditional pajamas consist of a jacket
Jacket
A jacket is a hip- or waist-length garment for the upper body. A jacket typically has sleeves, and fastens in the front. A jacket is generally lighter, tighter-fitting, and less insulating than a coat, which is outerwear...

-and-trousers combination made of soft fabric
Fabric
A fabric is a textile material, short for "textile fabric".Fabric may also refer to:*Fabric , the spatial and geometric configuration of elements within a rock*Fabric , a nightclub in London, England...

, such as flannel
Flannel
Flannel is a soft woven fabric, of various fineness. Flannel was originally made from carded wool or worsted yarn, but is now often made from either wool, cotton, or synthetic fibre. Flannel may be brushed to create extra softness or remain unbrushed. The brushing process is a mechanical process...

; the jacket has a placket front
Placket
A placket is an opening in the upper part of trousers or skirts, or at the neck or sleeve of a garment. Plackets are almost always used to allow clothing to be put on or removed easily, but are sometimes used purely as a design element...

 and its sleeves have no cuff
Cuff
A cuff is an extra layer of fabric at the lower edge of the sleeve of a garment covering the arms. In US usage the word may also refer to the end of the leg of a pair of trousers...

s. In colloquial
Colloquialism
A colloquialism is a word or phrase that is common in everyday, unconstrained conversation rather than in formal speech, academic writing, or paralinguistics. Dictionaries often display colloquial words and phrases with the abbreviation colloq. as an identifier...

 speech, these are often called pjs, jim jams or jammies; in South Asia, and sometimes in South Africa
South Africa
The Republic of South Africa is a country in southern Africa. Located at the southern tip of Africa, it is divided into nine provinces, with of coastline on the Atlantic and Indian oceans...

, they are known as night suits.

Contemporary



These are derived from traditional pajamas, and may be variations of style only, such as short sleeve
Sleeve
Sleeve is that part of a garment which covers the arm, or through which the arm passes or slips. The pattern of the sleeve is one of the characteristics of fashion in dress, varying in every country and period...

 pajamas, pajama-bottoms of varying length, or, on occasion, one-piece pajamas, or may involve variation in material used as well. Chiefly in the US, the latter type may refer to stretch-knit
Stretch fabric
Stretch fabric is a term that refers to synthetic fabrics which stretch. Stretch fabrics are split into two categories: 2-way stretch and 4-way stretch....

 sleep apparel with rib-knit
Ribbing (knitting)
In knitting, ribbing is a pattern in which vertical stripes of stockinette stitch alternate with vertical stripes of reverse stockinette stitch...

 trimmings. Usually worn by children, these garments have pullover
Pullover
Pullover may refer to:* Pullover Productions, UK producer of the children's television programme Pullover in the early 1980s* Sweater or hoodie, a piece of clothing "pulled over" the head instead of buttoned or zipped-up...

 tops (if two-piece) or have zipper
Zipper
A zipper is a commonly used device for temporarily joining two edges of fabric...

s down the fronts (if one-piece), and may also be footed
Blanket sleeper
The blanket sleeper is a type of especially warm sleeping garment worn primarily during the winter in the United States and Canada...

. Although pajamas are usually distinguished from non-bifurcated sleeping garments such as nightgown
Nightgown
A nightgown is a loosely hanging item of nightwear. Nowadays the term is almost exclusively applied to women's nightwear. A nightgown is typically made from cotton, silk, satin, or nylon...

s, in the US, they can sometimes include the latter, as in babydoll pajamas
Babydoll
A babydoll is a short, sometimes sleeveless, loose fitting nightgown or negligee intended as nightwear for women. It sometimes has formed cups called a bralette for cleavage with an attached loose fitting skirt falling in length usually between the upper thigh and the belly button...

.

Daywear


Even more generally, pajamas may refer to women's combination daywear, consisting of short-sleeved or sleeveless blouse
Blouse
A blouse is a loose-fitting upper garment that was formerly worn by workmen, peasants, artists, women and children. It is typically gathered at the waist so that it hangs loosely over the wearer's body. Today, the word most commonly refers to a woman's shirt but can also refer to a man's shirt if...

s and lightweight pant
Pant
Pant may refer to:* Pants, an article of clothing* To breathe quickly, spasmodically, or in a labored manner** Panting is used by many furry animals as a means of thermoregulation* Pant , a North Indian and Nepalese surnamePlaces...

s; examples of these are capri
Capri pants
Capri pants are mid-calf pants worn in warm weather. Variants end below the knee and calf...

 pajamas
, beach pajamas, and hostess pajamas.

Material


Pajamas are usually loose fitting and designed for comfort, using softer materials such as cotton or the more luxurious silk
Silk
Silk is a natural protein fiber, some forms of which can be woven into textiles. The best-known type of silk is obtained from the cocoons of the larvae of the mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori reared in captivity...

 or satin
Satin
Satin is a weave that typically has a glossy surface and a dull back. It is a warp-dominated weaving technique that forms a minimum number of interlacings in a fabric. If a fabric is formed with a satin weave using filament fibres such as silk, nylon, or polyester, the corresponding fabric is...

. Synthetic materials such as polyester and Lycra are also available.

Designs and patterns


Pajamas often contain visual references to a thing that may hold some special appeal to the wearer. Images of sports, animal
Animal
Animals are a major group of multicellular, eukaryotic organisms of the kingdom Animalia or Metazoa. Their body plan eventually becomes fixed as they develop, although some undergo a process of metamorphosis later on in their life. Most animals are motile, meaning they can move spontaneously and...

s, balloons, polka dots, stripes, and other things may all be used to decorate them. Pajamas may also be found in plainer designs, such as plaid or plain gray, but when worn in public, they are usually designed in such a way that makes their identity unambiguous. Older styles of children's pajamas have been depicted as having a square button-up flap covering the buttocks.

Custom


Pajamas are often worn with bare feet and sometimes without underwear, . They are often worn as comfort wear even when not in bed, and are also sometimes worn as a fashion statement. In North America, some people have started to wear pajama pants in public as fashion. In China, it is not unusual in the late afternoon or evening, to have adults wear their pajamas in public around their local neighborhood. The supermarket Tesco
Tesco
Tesco plc is a global grocery and general merchandise retailer headquartered in Cheshunt, United Kingdom. It is the third-largest retailer in the world measured by revenues and the second-largest measured by profits...

 in St Mellons, Cardiff, Great Britain started a ban on pajamas in January 2010.

History


The word "pajama" was incorporated into the English language from Persian. The word originally derives from the Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

 word پايجامه Payjama meaning "leg garment."

Image:Attendant indian camp1844.jpg|Courier in white paijama, India, 1844.
Image:Cheetahs nawab oudh1844.jpg|Men in white paijama with hunting cheetah
Cheetah
The cheetah is a large-sized feline inhabiting most of Africa and parts of the Middle East. The cheetah is the only extant member of the genus Acinonyx, most notable for modifications in the species' paws...

s, India 1844.
Image:Muslim men bombay1867.jpg|Muslim men in paijamas (various styles), Bombay, 1867
Image:Muslim girl sind1870.jpg|Muslim woman in salwar-style pyjamas, Sindh
Sindh
Sindh historically referred to as Ba'ab-ul-Islam , is one of the four provinces of Pakistan and historically is home to the Sindhi people. It is also locally known as the "Mehran". Though Muslims form the largest religious group in Sindh, a good number of Christians, Zoroastrians and Hindus can...

, 1870.

The worldwide use of pajamas (the word and the garment) is the result of British presence in South Asia
South Asia
South Asia, also known as Southern Asia, is the southern region of the Asian continent, which comprises the sub-Himalayan countries and, for some authorities , also includes the adjoining countries to the west and the east...

 in the 18th and 19th centuries. According to Yule and Burnell's Hobson-Jobson (1903) the word originally referred to loose trousers tied around the waist.

According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, "They were introduced in England as lounging attire in the 17th century but soon went out of fashion. About 1870 they reappeared in the Western world as sleeping attire for men, after returning British colonials brought (them) back ...."

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