Send Your Inquiry Today
Quick Quote

The Detailed History of Ties: An Interesting Evolution

In today’s modern life, whether it’s a scenario for working or socializing, you may find that ties are always an integral part of how people dress themselves. Although ties are worn every day, the history of ties is not widely known. Therefore, this post is here to guide you through the detailed history of ties by revealing some interesting facts about them. Now, start reading the post and dive into the fantastic world of ties!

The Historical Appearance of Ties

Tie, as a modern-time accessory, doesn’t seem to be an ancient item from human history. However, early forms of the ties can actually be found on many historical sites in both the East and West. Among them, the most famous ones are two relics located in China and Italy. What these two pieces of evidence have in common is that ties are linked to the military.

The Neck Cloth Excavated in China

The first historical appearance of ties could be traced back to the Qin Dynasty around 210 BC. It’s a historical site dug out in Xi’an. Here, Chinese researchers found an extensive collection of terracotta sculptures.

The terracotta army was built on Qin Shi Huang’s order. As China’s first emperor, he wanted his vast army to guard him throughout eternity. Thanks to the persuasion of his ministers, Qin Shi Huang agreed instead to have life-size replicas to accompany him after his death. At the excavated site of the Terracotta Warriors, each soldier was found to wear a wrapped neck cloth. This may be the earliest predecessor of the modern tie ever seen in the history of ties.

The Terracotta Army

However, the army is the only evidence of ancient Chinese wearing the neck cloth. There are no other findings to suggest that the Chinese commonly wore neckcloths in ancient times. And the neck cloth worn, according to the researchers, could possibly be a badge of honor representing Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s strong troops.

The Neckties Depicted in Italy

In Rome, Italy, the necktie is also depicted in Trajan’s Column. This landmark, built around 113 AD, is also historical evidence of neckties.

The Trajan’s Column was built to commemorate his victory in the Dacia War. The ashes of Trajan were buried at the base of this column, declaring that he was staying with the Roman people for eternity. Here in the spiral bas relief, you can see thousands of soldiers wearing manifold styles of neckwear. This is another historical evidence found to be the early appearance of neckties.

The Trajan’s Column

Yet, as was a similar case with the Chinese, researchers have also been unable to find any other similar historical evidence to suggest that neckties were widely worn at this time. So, it could also be a token given by Emperor Trajan to reward his soldiers.

The First Invention of Ties in History

It’s generally believed that ties were invented around the early 1630s when the Thirty Years War was taking place. And the history of tie literally began when “tie” was brought to France from Croatia.

At that time, a troop of Croatian soldiers was sent to help France’s army. The French King Louis XIII noticed the Croats were all wearing neckerchiefs, which held the top of their uniforms to protect the shirts and buttons. Those starched, ruffled collars attracted him so much that he began to wear neckerchiefs in his everyday life.

From then, these ties prevailed among the upper class. When Louis XIV mounted the throne, these ties were widely worn among military personnel, French courtiers, and even ordinary citizens. Some people even speculate that the French word “cravat” (which means “tie” in English) originates from the word “Croat” as it was Croat who brought them to France.

The Modernization: How Ties Became What It Is Today

Although the cravat can be seen as the true opener for the history of modern ties, its appearance was still quite different from the modern tie. After being widely spread and constantly updated in Europe, the tie then became the way we know it today. However, this process took nearly a few hundred years.

The Vogue Prevailing in Europe

Cravat first came to England when Charles II took back his throne in 1660. Since England had a large number of colonies around the world, these neckties appeared all over the world. Unlike the cravat, which was primarily used as a practical item, the British considered neckwear as a stylish accessory for well-dressed gentlemen. Thus, they created multiple patterns of ties, including tasseled strings, ruffled collars, ribbons, embroiders linen, cotton, and an abundance of lace.

The history of ties continued in the 18th century when neckwear became a favorite accessory for people of all classes. The trend became more and more popular with Napoleon, who loved to wear neckties, going on his expeditions. Napoleon even wore a black tie to honor the Duke of Wellington at the Battle of Waterloo.

At this time, the term “tie” also appeared as a constant renewal of itself. This expression is not only used in oral communication, but also in writings. For example, George Cruikshank wrote a book called “The Neckclothitania” to satirize the worldwide craze for neckties. Or H. Le Blanc’s “The Art of Tying the Cravat”, written in 1828 to explain 32 different ways of tying a tie.

The Practical Application in the 19th Century

In the history of ties, the first significant modernization took place during the 18th-19th Industrial Revolution. Workers gave up the stiff, fancy, and hard-to-tie ties of the past. Their needs led to the production of modern ties that were comfortable, simple, and easy to work with. This was why workers were called “white-collar” at that time. The Four-in-Hand Knot, which is still popular today, was also invented at this time.

In 1880, Oxford University’s rowing club first replaced their players’ boaters with ties to show that they belonged to the same school. This practice has since been widely adopted around the world to indicate each person’s respective affiliations, no matter schools or companies.

In the 1880s England, King Edward VII often wore a type of tie decorated with a pin when he went to a horse racing events named “The Royal Ascot”. Therefore, the “Ascot tie”, also known as “bow tie” today, got its name. With the widespread popularity among his people, ascot ties also became famous as a fashion item and one of the standards for formal morning dress.

The General Modality in the 20th Century

By the 1920s, the tie underwent a second significant change with the innovation of a New York tie maker named Jesse Langsdorf. He utilized three-piece construction to cut the fabric at a 45-degree angle. This bias can help cut the interlining of the ties, allowing ties to hang naturally and straight after being knotted.

Since then, despite the length and width of the ties have changed, the overall style of the ties has remained more or less stable. The Langsdorf way of production is still in use today. The history of ties then remains almost stable. And this is the modern tie as we know it.


Through the introduction of this article, you should already have a basic understanding of the history of ties. Due to its long history, there are various kinds of ties. For the silk tie alone, there are silk woven ties, silk jacquard ties, printed silk ties, silk bow ties, and so on. If you are interested in tie manufacture, feel free to contact Sinosilk at your convenience. Sinosilk will try its best to provide you with high-quality ties that meet your needs.

One Stop Silk Product
customized Solution

Update cookies preferences Update cookies preferences
Scroll to Top