Movies often portray the Celts and Gauls as deadly warriors; barbarians who fought without underwear.
This article will explore the strange history of going commando. We’re also going to look at how this slice of history relates to life today.
In this article, you'll find:
- The history of Scotland
- Why Scots, Celts & Gauls fought without underwear
- Why you should consider going commando
For you to understand who the Scots, Celts, and Gauls were, you need a quick lesson on Scottish history. So let’s dive in and see why these men decided to go commando…
The History Of Scotland
People have lived in Scotland for over 12,000 years, and in that time, there have been wars, battles, tribes, kings, and fashion trends.
Within Scotland, from around 700BC to 100AD was known as the Iron Age. This was when people learned how to use metal to create weapons, jewelry, and everyday items. These people were known as Celts.
Who were the Celts and Gauls?
The Celts spread across Europe and, in some cases, carried on their legacy into 500AD.
There are many types of Celts; those in Europe, especially France, were called the Gauls. Then in Scotland, there were two dominant tribes: the Picts and the Gaelic.
As time went on, these two tribes eventually came together and, in the 1600s, became what we now call the Scots and formed the country of Scotland.
There’s evidence across Europe of the Celtic knotwork and metalwork that is still admired, even today.
To show off their culture, Celtic men and women adorned elaborate hairstyles and wore colorful clothing that really stood out against other empires at the time.
Researchers at the Integrative Prehistory and Archaeological Science (IPAS) and the Department of Ancient Civilizations of the University of Basell, Switzerland, confirmed that the Celtic people ate cereals like barley and wheat. They also hunted and ate meat such as beef, pork, mutton, goat, and dairy products.
There’s a reason they struck fear into the hearts of their enemies, and it wasn’t just the barbaric nature that they embodied.
The battles of old were just as psychological as they were physical. And the Scots, Celts, and Gauls may have been onto something.
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Who were the Scots (and why did they wear kilts)?
Despite being portrayed as worn in medieval battles against the English, the kilt was actually invented to usher in the modern age of the Scots. It started as a fashionable traditional dress for both men and boys in the Scottish Highlands. This skirt-type clothing item was pleated in the back and made of woolen cloth in a tartan pattern.
You might’ve heard the saying, “A true Scotsman doesn’t wear underwear,” and traditionally, they wouldn’t have done. However, a study by YouGov.com found that 55% of males who have worn kilts wear underwear, and 7% wear shorts underneath.
The expression, and tradition, began in the 18th century when the Scottish Military required that their men not wear underwear under their kilts. It made it easier for the men to go to the bathroom and not be caught by surprise.
As times have changed, laws, rules, and regulations now require Scottish men wearing kilts also to put on underwear. In addition, competitions requiring kilts, such as the Highland Games, require competitors to wear underwear of dark color and not white.
Let’s take a deeper look into why the Scots, Celts, and Gauls would fight without Underwear.
Why Go Commando? Reason #1 Psychological Warfare
Did you know that they were often going commando or even naked during battles?
According to Philip Freeman, Qualley Professor of Classics at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, the Greeks and the Romans believed the Celts to be terrifying barbarians that won battles against their armies while naked with their swords drawn.
The fact that they went commando on the battlefield wasn’t just for practical reasons. And war isn’t just won on the battlefield.
The Scots, Gauls, and Celts were experts in psychological warfare. It presented them as confident to both their allies and their enemies.
As Polybius wrote:
“thinking that thus they would be more efficient, as some of the ground was overgrown with brambles which would catch in their clothes and impede the use of their weapons.”
Although it was more efficient, Polybius went on to say that it actually became a disadvantage when it came to facing off against the Romans javelin squad.
The Scots, Celts, and Gaulsreally used their appearance to their advantage, especially while waging war. Diodorus Siculus claimed that the Gauls towered over their counterparts the Mediterranean empires of Greece and Rome. They were wearing bronze helmets to accentuate their height, charging into battle “openly and without forethought.”
However, the Celts would have been easily overpowered by the Romans, who had a much larger army, better weapons, and high-quality armor without these intimidating tactics.
Why Go Commando? Reason #2 You Preserve Precious Resources
Thousands of years ago, when the Celts were divided into several tribes, they didn’t have access to the same number of outfit choices as we do today.
These were simple people who lived off the land, had a societal hierarchy, and kept very few possessions.
When it came to doing battle, they didn’t even have the type of army or weaponry you’d expect. Instead, their primary weapons were iron swords and spears, and they often used slingshots as their only projectile.
When comparing that to the Romans who used javelins, bow and arrows, and even catapults, the Celts really needed to get close to their enemies to stand a chance.
So it stands to reason that they would want to protect what they have, wouldn’t it?
Why Go Commando? Reason #3 You Can Fight With Agility
Instead of being weighed down by heavy armor, the Scots, Gauls, and Celts could move around the battlefield more quickly – which was lucky considering they didn’t have projectile weapons.
They preferred fighting up close and personal, so being grabbed by an enemy was a real possibility. And if an enemy could hold them, it would likely end the battle for them.
If a Celt or Gaul were to get injured in battle, they could keep their wounds clean because the fabric from their clothes wouldn’t get into the wound – keeping it clean.
These days, there are still plenty of men that avoid even the best men's underwear and go commando regularly. But what are the reasons why (and when) you should consider it – even if you’re not going into battle?
Why Go Commando? Reason #4 It Shows Bravery
The Romans were the most significant enemy of the Gauls and Celts (aside from the English). The highly disciplined legions that entered England and struggled to conquer the north were fully equipped, better prepared in battle, and were well-oiled machines.
Yet, the Romans feared the Celts.
Can you imagine how they would’ve felt standing across from a group of men, very clearly naked from the waist down, covered in tattoos, and dyed blue?
It would definitely leave you feeling unnerved.
Now, let’s imagine this from the side of the Celts, how would you feel if you’d destroyed your enemy with low-quality weapons, naked and being outnumbered?
It would make you feel invincible and like there’s some sort of divine intervention. But then, you could head home and brag to everyone about how strong you are.
The famous historian Diodorus Siculus reported in his book Bibliotheca Historica (60BC):
“Physically, the Celts are terrifying in appearance, with deep sounding and very harsh voices. In conversation, they use few words and speak in riddles, for the most part, hinting at things and leaving a great deal to be understood. They frequently exaggerate with the aim of extolling themselves and diminishing the status of others. They are boasters and threateners and given to bombastic self-dramatization.”
It’s this feeling of bravery and bravado that kept the Romans at bay for nearly five hundred years. The Celts won the majority of the battles from 400BC until 51BC, when Julius Caesar defeated the Gauls. After that, it would take another century before the Romans conquered Scotland.
Should Men Wear Underwear? 3 Benefits Of Going Commando
#1 Less sweat, more breeze
By maximizing airflow, men sweat less because underwear adds an extra layer of fabric that can increase the heat within your private area. The increased airflow that circulates from going commando feels pretty good.
There are other ways to achieve this, especially if the pants you’re wearing require underwear. For example, you could wear looser-fitting underwear or even certain fabrics that help keep things dry by increasing airflow.
#2 Increased fertility
In 2018, Harvard University conducted a study that suggests wearing tight and restricting underwear can reduce male fertility by more than 25%.
Wearing tight underwear pushes everything into the torso, where it gets exposed to the body’s heat. Going commando can help increase your fertility.
#3 It’s more comfortable
The reduced restrictions that underwear can give you mean going commando feels more comfortable.
This is especially true when being active, such as at the gym or lounging around in the comfort of your own home. For example, imagine coming home after a long day at the office, taking off your suit, and putting on some gym shorts – pure bliss and instant relaxation.
Going commando in public, especially in gym shorts, doesn’t leave much to the imagination. Not to mention the hygiene factor, which means that you need to look at what men’s underwear styles are the right ones for you.
Going commando is not something that is modern. In fact, even going commando today can be justified in much the same way as it was thousands of years ago.
The Celts, Scots, and Gauls were an intimidating force. So much so that even the Roman Empire didn't want to mess with them.
They bared all for comfort, ease of movement, and as a powerplay, giving them the advantage over their enemies. Maximizing their fierce reputation, they were able to intimidate and win wars with psychological warfare.
Today, however, the only enemy is feeling uncomfortable and enhancing the chances of reproduction.
Like the Scots, Celts and Gauls, your decision to go commando depends on your situation. Is going commando better? If you’re in the comfort of your own home, it’s a great way to feel relaxed. In the office? Not so much. When making conscious fashion choices, remember that you should still find the best one for you even if it can’t be seen.
Click below to watch the movie – DEADLY Warriors Fought Naked?! Strange History of Going Commando