Some here say they have seen that they did exist, but buckled belts are
far more common. Mostly they are a reenactor convenience. My personal
belief is that they are related to macramé plant hangers, as many early
SCA members wore macramé belts.
My suspicion is that in yon olden days, when SCA and Re-enacting was
just getting off the ground, sources were hard to come by and people
were forced to make due with the poorly researched materials available
to them, and when faced with a gap in information, make a guess.
In this case, they guessed wrong, but by the time the information flow
was such that people knew this, it was too engrained in the re-enacting
That works, too.
Not that this is any reason to encourage the practice... our shire
hasn't had a ring belt for five years. We have a belt making workshop
every year, and if anyone does buy a ring belt, they get a new buckle
for it for Xmas, their b'day, etc :) Now I need to start mass-producing
pewter belt bits...
A product of the hippy 60s. Reenactors like the SCA came out of the
hippy period. I have not seen anything coming out of 'digs' to
show buckles that didn’t have tongues. Though it appears the
tongues and the leather mostly deteriorated before the rest of the
buckle. I won’t make a ring belt. JMHO.
Nope. There were round buckles, but they did have tongues.
I've never found the root of it, but I have a sneaking suspicion that it
began as a misinterpretation of a poorly focused/printed picture of a
Yes, the ring belt existed. But it also contained a tongue, just like
modern belts. Many of the finds only had the ring part left, which is
probably what led to confusion. Buckles with tongues are very period.
“…but I have a sneaking suspicion that it began as a
misinterpretation of a poorly focused/printed picture of a monumental
brass.” That's possible, although I've always wondered if it was
because of an incorrect reproduction of the drawings of figures from
manuscript illuminations. I've seen it happen to pictures of
clothing where the person making a line drawing copy didn't copy some
See I had always thought and heard... they came from old horse leads...
simple leather lead that people started using as a belt.. :)