Hoofdbedekking van de vrouw

"Christus is het hoofd van de man, de man het hoofd van de vrouw en God het hoofd van Christus. Iedere man die met bedekt hoofd bidt of profeteert, maakt zijn hoofd te schande. Maar een vrouw maakt haar hoofd te schande wanneer ze met onbedekt hoofd bidt of profeteert, want ze is in dat geval precies hetzelfde als een kaalgeschoren vrouw. Een vrouw die haar hoofd niet bedekt, kan zich maar beter laten kaalknippen. Wanneer ze dat een schande vindt, moet ze haar hoofd bedekken. Een man mag zijn hoofd niet bedekken omdat hij Gods beeld en luister is. De vrouw is echter de luister van de man. (De man is immers niet uit de vrouw voortgekomen, maar de vrouw uit de man; en de man is niet omwille van de vrouw geschapen, maar de vrouw omwille van de man.) Daarom, en omwille van de engelen, moet een vrouw zeggenschap over haar hoofd hebben. Echter, in hun verbondenheid met de Heer is de vrouw niets zonder de man, en ook de man niets zonder de vrouw. Want zoals de vrouw uit de man is voortgekomen, zo bestaat de man door de vrouw - en alles is ontstaan uit God. Oordeelt u daarom zelf. Is het gepast dat een vrouw met onbedekt hoofd tot God bidt? Leert de natuur zelf u niet dat lang haar een man te schande maakt, terwijl het een vrouw tot eer strekt? Het haar van de vrouw is haar gegeven om een hoofdbedekking te dragen." 1 Kor. 11:2-15.


A virgin meets me, adorned as if she were proceeding from the bridal chamber. She was clothed entirely in white and wore white sandals. She was veiled up to her forehead, and her head was covered by a hood. Hermas (c. 150, W), 2.18.

Such a covering should be worn as is necessary for covering the eyes of women. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.264, 265.

It has also been commanded that the head should be veiled and the face covered. For it is a wicked thing for beauty to be a snare to men. Nor is it appropriate for a woman to desire to make herself conspicuous by using a purple veil. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.266.

And a Christian woman will never fall, if she puts before her eyes modesty and her veil. Nor will she invite another to fall into sin by uncovering her face. For this is the wish of the Word, since it is becoming for her to pray veiled. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.290.

“Because of the angels.” By the “angels,” he means righteous and virtuous men. Let her be veiled then, so that she may not lead them to stumble into fornication. For the real angels in heaven see her, even though she is veiled. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195, E), 2.578.

The quotations below from Tertullian address the issue whether the apostolic commandment concerning veiling applies only to married women or whether it applies to virgins as well: 

That matter must now be dealt with that is inconsistently observed throughout the churches. I am referring to the issue of whether virgins should be veiled or not. For those persons who give virgins immunity from a head covering appear to rest their position on this: that the apostle has not specified “virgins” to be veiled—but “women.” . . . Indeed, he says women must be veiled “because of the angels.” This refers to the event, when, on account of “the daughters of men,” angels revolted from God. Now, who would argue that it was only “women” (that is, those who were already married and had lost their virginity) who were the objects of angelic lust. Are virgins incapable of excelling in beauty and finding lovers? . . . Why do you uncover before God what you cover before men? Will you be more modest in public than in the church? . . . Be veiled, virgin, if you really are a virgin. For you should blush. If you are a virgin, shrink from the gaze of many eyes. Let no one admire your face. Let no one perceive your falsehood. Tertullian (c. 198, W), 3.687–3.689.

Some persons disputed about eating idol sacrifices; others about the veiled dress of women. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 3.286.

But why “should the woman have power over her head, because of the angels”? If it is because she was created for the man, and taken out of the man, according to the Creator’s purpose, then in this way too has the apostle maintained the discipline of that God. . . . He adds: “Because of the angels.” What angels? In other words, whose angels? If he means the fallen angels of the Creator, there is great propriety in his meaning. It is right that the face which was a snare to them should wear some mark of a humble guise and veiled beauty. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 3.445.

It behooves our virgins to be veiled from the time that they have passed the turning point of their age. This observance is required by truth. Therefore, no one can impose any condition on it: no space of time, no influence of persons, and no privilege of regions. . . . Throughout Greece, and certain of its barbaric provinces, the majority of churches keep their virgins covered. There are places, too, beneath this [North African] sky, where this practice is also followed (lest anyone ascribe the custom to Greek or barbarian Gentilehood). But I have proposed as models those churches which were founded by apostles or apostolic men. . . . Still, until very recently, among us, females following either custom were admitted to communion with comparative indifference. The matter had been left up to choice—for each virgin either to veil herself or expose herself. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.27, 4.28.

But insofar as it is the custom to argue even from the Scriptures in opposition to truth, there is immediately urged against us the fact that no mention of “virgins” is made by the apostle when he is prescribing about the veil. Rather, only “women” are named. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.29.

Likewise, the Corinthians themselves understood him in this manner. In fact, at this very day, the Corinthians do veil their virgins. What the apostles taught, their disciples approve. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.33.

Even if it is on account of the angels that she is to be veiled, the age from which the law of the veil will come into operation will no doubt be that from which the “daughters of men” were able to invite lust of their persons and to experience marriage. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.34.

Since they veil their heads in the presence of pagans, let them at all events conceal their virginity in the church. After all, they veil themselves outside the church. If they fear strangers, let them stand in awe of their brothers too. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.35.

For some, with their turbans and woollen bands, do not veil their heads, but bind them up. They are protected, indeed, in front. However, they are bare where the head properly lies. Others are to a certain extent covered over the region of the brain with linen doilies of small dimensions . . . which do not quite reach the ears. . . . Let them know that the whole head constitutes the woman. Its limits and boundaries reach as far as the place where the robe begins. The region of the veil is co-extensive with the space covered by the hair when unbound. . . . Arabia’s pagan females will be your judges. For they cover not only the head, but the face also. Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.37.

How severe a chastisement will they likewise deserve, who during the Psalms—and at any mention of God—remain uncovered. Even when about to spend time in prayer itself, with the utmost readiness they place a fringe, tuft, or any thread whatever on the crown of their heads and suppose themselves to be covered! Tertullian (c. 207, W), 4.37.

Among the Jews, so usual is it for their women to have the head veiled, that they may thereby be recognized. Tertullian (c. 211, W), 3.95.

In respect of the woman’s veil, he says, “Does not even nature teach you?” Tertullian (c. 211, W), 3.96.

A woman should not appear with her head uncovered—on account of the angels. Tertullian (c. 211, W), 3.102.

When you are in the streets, cover your head. For by such a covering, you will avoid being viewed by idle persons. . . . Look downward when you walk in public, veiling yourself, as becomes women. Apostolic Constitutions (compiled c. 390, E), 7.395;

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