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Ethiopian woman’s attire

<b>Ethiopian woman’s attire</b>

Ethiopian woman’s attire

The white color and narrow embroidered band characterize Ethiopian dress, Jewish and non-Jewish alike. The wearer’s social status, occupation, and even mood are conveyed by the way she wears the shama, a cloth draped over the main garment in Ethiopia.

Following their exposure to the rest of world Jewry in the early 20th century, Ethiopian Jews chose to emphasize their national identity by adding new motifs such as the Star of David and the menorah to the embroidery on their garments.


Cotton, cotton thread embroidery

Wrap-around cloth (shama)




Purchase, Fritz and Camilla Hollander Foundation, Stockholm

Purchased through the gift of Mr. and Mrs. Uzi Zucker, New York

Gift of Ora and Avi Mizrahi, Jerusalem

Accession number:

B88.0459, B92.0799, B92.0802

Jewish Art and Life
From the Israel Museum publications:

Juhasz, Esther (ed.), The Jewish Wardrobe from the Collection of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 5 Continents Editions, Milan and The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 2012