Wigging Out

I heard that British lawyers were going to stop wearing wigs in court from today on.  Well tickle me pink, I didn’t know they even wore wigs!

I usually think of J.S. Bach and other super-old-dead people when I picture those funny looking curly wigs on men’s heads.  It turns out that in the UK, this was a tradition that carried over from 800 or so years ago.  I did some research, and the most reasonable purpose for the wigs and the robes is to ensure that the outcome is not affected by the lawyer’s dress or hairstyle.

I’m not sure how valid this point is, but every other site can only claim that wigs lend an air of solemnity, impartiality and anonymity.  Although I want to call this lame, I guess I expect Canadian judges to wear robes, and I don’t feel compelled to challenge that.  Maybe it automatically puts legal professionals in a higher position than “average people” in our perceptions.  Maybe that’s the desired effect.

Anyway, here’s a nifty picture of what we can expect to see our legal friends in the commonwealth will be wearing in the future.  Apparently, there was a whole lot of debate about this too.  Something about funky dress clothes.  What a waste of time and energy.  They must really have no crime in the UK these days.


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