As noted in this answer, the typical well-know-from-paintings red coats and hats uniform of Russian Streltsy guard was both a winter and summer uniform.

Is there any reason why an (obviously warm, to survive Russian winter) clothing was also used as summer uniform? It must have strongly reduced the military efficacy of the troops, who'd be sweltering in Moscow heat in summer in the same cloths required to survive Moscow winter.

Was it cost? Rarity of uniform clothing pre-textile-industry? Logistic issues? Or the fact that the uniform wasn't actually all that warm and winter warmth was instead achieved by layers of cloths worn under the red coats?

  • Please note that "Nobody else had summer uniforms then" isn't an asnswer - if that's your basis of approach, you need to explain why nobody else at the time introduced such an obvious military advantageous innovation.
    – DVK
    Jan 28, 2014 at 18:18
  • 1. Loved the Russian Spetznaz line. 2. Can you give other examples of summer uniform from that time? Jan 28, 2014 at 18:20
  • @FelixGoldberg - I cannot (and possibly because there were none) - but please see my comment posted right while you were typing yours. P.S. I know that a bit earlier, in 1600s, in 30 year war they didn't really have uniforms per se in the first place.
    – DVK
    Jan 28, 2014 at 18:20
  • 2
    Thick clothing also provides protection for various weapons. Jan 28, 2014 at 19:43
  • Summer?! In Russia?! We have only winter here! Actually, two winters: the long one (with snow) and the the short one (without).
    – sds
    Jan 28, 2014 at 19:53

1 Answer 1


Actually, streltsy worn two types of kaftans – basic kaftan and kaftan for cold weather. Cold weather kaftan is quilted with sheepskin or fur and has fur collar and fur hem sleeves.

Basic kaftan:

Basic kaftan

Winter kaftan (note sleeves and collar):

Winter kaftan

According to Yuri Veremeev, "Anatomy of Army"

  • also, gloves...
    – Anixx
    Aug 26, 2017 at 0:52

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