This makes it official. The red velvet Santa hat was only a hint.
An amazing sartorial revolution is under way in the Vatican. Benedict XVI has junked the trendy tat worn by recent Popes, and on Palm Sunday will wear brand new red and gold silk baroque vestments bearing the heraldic motifs of Leo X, the last Medici Pope.
The 30-piece set, which includes chasubles, cope, and dalmatics, copies the fabric and designs worn by Leo in 1513.
Unfortunately, even if I did have the money to commission it, I don’t think I’ll ever find myself in a job where I can get away with a mantle, wimple, surcote and undercote. Unfortunately.
Surely it should also include an enormous linen handkerchief that the Master of Ceremonies can lend Bobbie Mickens of the Tablet to dry his tears of rage at the reappearance of “reactionary” vestments in the sanctuary of St Peter’s.