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Why do pants come in pairs?

Heymatt:

Why are underwear and pants always referred to as a "pair"? Yes, there are two leg holes or pant legs, but a single shirt has two arm holes or sleeves but is never referred to as a pair of shirts.

-- Apparelly Challenged, Poway

Apparently so. "Pair" from the Latin means two like things. And pants (pantaloons) were originally two like things. You put them on one leg at a time because they actually came in two pieces. You put on one leg, tied it around your waist, put on the other leg, tied it around your waist. From the beginning, about the 16th Century, pants (and breeches, trousers, etc.) have been referred to as a pair. Shirts, on the other hand, were made from a single piece of cloth, so two sleeves didn't inspire anybody to call it a pair of shirts. Or a pair of bras.

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Heymatt:

Why are underwear and pants always referred to as a "pair"? Yes, there are two leg holes or pant legs, but a single shirt has two arm holes or sleeves but is never referred to as a pair of shirts.

-- Apparelly Challenged, Poway

Apparently so. "Pair" from the Latin means two like things. And pants (pantaloons) were originally two like things. You put them on one leg at a time because they actually came in two pieces. You put on one leg, tied it around your waist, put on the other leg, tied it around your waist. From the beginning, about the 16th Century, pants (and breeches, trousers, etc.) have been referred to as a pair. Shirts, on the other hand, were made from a single piece of cloth, so two sleeves didn't inspire anybody to call it a pair of shirts. Or a pair of bras.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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