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Hose are any of various styles of men's clothing for the legs and lower body, worn from the Middle Ages through the 17th century, when the term fell out of use in favour of breeches and stockings. (See also trousers.) The old plural form of "hose" was hosen. In German these terms (Hose, singular, and Hosen, plural) remained in use and are the generic terms for trousers today. The French equivalent was chausses.
Early wool hose were fitted to the leg, and 15th century hose were often made particolored or mi-parti, having each leg a different colour, or even one leg made of two colors. These early hose were footed, in the manner of modern tights, and were open from the crotch to the leg. When very short doublets were in fashion, codpieces were added to cover the front opening.
By the 16th century, hose had separated into two garments: upper hose or breeches and nether hose or stockings.
From the mid-16th to early 17th centuries, a variety of styles of hose were in fashion. Popular styles included:
Hose or chausses worn with braies and tied to a belt, 1440
Charles IX of France wearing padded hose, 1566
Sir Walter Raleigh in paned trunk hose and cannions, and his son in loose slops, 1602