Cagoule/kagoule

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Paulfromitaly

MODerator
Italian
Hello,

This is the Oxford Dictionary entry for cagoule:

a lightweight, hooded, thigh-length waterproof jacket
I've always thought this was the only meaning of this word, however if you look up "cagoule" in Google pictures, you'll find that most of the hits show an item that I'd call "balaclava".
If you look up "kagoule", which should be an alternative, less common spelling of the same word, you'll find pictures of a hooded rain jacket.

Cagoule pictures

Kagoule pictures

Is cagoule a synonym of balaclava?
How do you call that kind of hooded, waterproof jacket? Cagoule or Kagoule?

Thank you
 
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    In my experience and in AE: It's always cagoule, never kagoule. It's a hooded, waterproof jacket. It's never a balaclava.
     

    Gwan

    Senior Member
    New Zealand, English
    Cagoule is French for balaclava, so you might be finding French pictures. As an aside, I'd never heard cagoule at all before coming to Europe, I always assumed it was British English.
     

    Paulfromitaly

    MODerator
    Italian
    Cagoule is French for balaclava, so you might be finding French pictures. As an aside, I'd never heard cagoule at all before coming to Europe, I always assumed it was British English.
    That's why!
    I knew cagoule came from the French, but I didn't realise its meaning could have changed from balaclava to raincoat with the years.
    Thanks
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    OED says a cagoule is "A lightweight, waterproof (or windproof) hooded garment resembling an anorak, worn orig. by mountaineers and now generally."
    It attributes cagoule to French, Cagoulard ( one who wears a cagoule) and to cagoule, also French, a sleeveless hooded garment worn by monks.

    It's not hard to see how the monks' cagoule or cowl became both an anorak-like garment (by addition of sleeves), and a balaclava (by shortening of the lower parts and extension of the hood to close across the face).
     

    Paulfromitaly

    MODerator
    Italian
    It's not hard to see how the monks' cagoule or cowl became both an anorak-like garment (by addition of sleeves), and a balaclava (by shortening of the lower parts and extension of the hood to close across the face).
    But you would never call a balaclava "cagoule" in English, would you?
     
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