Friday, October 11, 2013

Oriental Headwear: The Eastern Rite Catholic

“She speaks in the various cultures of the different continents, …amid the polyphony of the various voices she raises a single harmonious song to the living God”  - Pope Benedict XVI

2012 Consistory of Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle, after receiving a 
Red Biretta 
from Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

Yes, we are familiar with Biretta – a red square cap with three ridges on top. It is a headwear use by Latin Church Cardinals within the Catholic Church. [Amaranth in color for Bishops, Black for Priest, Deacons, and Seminarians]. But what about the two other headwear?

Oriental Headwear: The Eastern Rite Catholic

Mudi Thoppi – head covering in a shape reminiscent of an onion dome.
Eskimo – (veil/hood) embellished with 13 crosses signifying Christ and his twelve apostles whose mission is to spread the Gospel message throughout the world.

His Beatitude Isaac Cardinal Cleemis Thottunkal 
head of India's Syro-Malankara Catholics wearing Mudi Thoppi and Masnapso

Eskimo (veil/hood) with 13 crosses

Tabieh – round quilted turban-like used by Maronite Catholic clergy.
Escime - (veil/hood) plain hood without embroidery, (usually use by Maronite Catholic monk)

His Beatitude Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros al-Rahi (Lebanon), 
Maronite Catholic Patriarch of Antioch with a dignified Red Tabieh and Escime.

Escime - (veil/hood)

Shash - a traditional Chaldean Catholic Church headdress

His Beatitude Cardinal Mar Emmanuel III Delly 
Patriarch Emeritus of the Chaldeans, Baghdad, Iraq. 
Wearing Red Shash during the 2008 consistory of cardinal. 
The Chaldean Catholic Church is one of 
the most persecuted in the Middle East.

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI with Cardinal Mar Emmanuel III Delly 
Patriarch Emeritus of the Chaldeans, Baghdad, Iraq.  

Kamilavkion - is a stiff cylindrical head covering
Kalansowa – hood/veil embroidered with cross.

His Beatitude, Ignace Joseph III Younan Patriarch of Antioch and 
all the East of the Syrians for the Syriac Catholic Church.
 Meeting with Pope Francis 
while wearing the traditional Syrian Kamilavkion with Kalansowa

His Beatitude, Ignace Joseph III Younan
wearing only the 
Kalansowa embroidered with
one cross.

Klobuk - It is composed of a kamilavka (stiffened black headcovering, round and flat on the top) with an epanokamelavkion (veil) which completely covers the kamilavka and hangs down over the shoulders and back. (from

His Beatitude, Gregorios III, Melkite Patriarch of Antioch and 
All the East, of Alexandria and of Jerusalem wearing Klobuk

Two eastern bishops wearing Klobuk

Qob – Ethiopian Biretta

Archbishop Berhaneyesus Demerew Souraphiel, C.M. -
Archbishop of the
 Ethiopian Catholic Church, Addis Abeba, Ethiopia (Africa) 
wearing an amaranth color Qob

Red Qob - Ethiopian Beritta for Cardinal

Birettra - a combination between elements of the Roman biretta and the Syro-Malabar mitre.

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