Zamarra (coat)

A zamarra is a sheepskin coat worn by Spanish shepherds.[1] In the 1830s, Edward Bell Stephens strongly recommended that visitors to the Spanish Basque region purchase the zamarra, which he described as made from black Andalusian astrakhan lined with white sheepskin.[2] It was recommended as an ideal travelling jacket, serviceable in both heat and cold, and very water-resistant.[2]

Man wearing a zamarra

The academic garment also worn as a vestment, the chimere is closely related to the zamarra,[3] from which it evolved during the Middle Ages.[4]

A similar coat is used in Alentejo, southern Portugal, and called samarra.[5] It is made of wool, with a furry collar, and the usual colours are brown, dark blue or black.


  1. ^ Lewandowski, Elizabeth J. (2011). The complete costume dictionary. Lanham, Md.: Scarecrow Press, Inc. p. 323. ISBN 0810877856.
  2. ^ a b Bell Stephens, Edward (1837). The Basque Provinces: Their Political State, Scenery, and Inhabitants; with Adventures Among the Carlists and Christinos, Volume 2. Whittaker & Company. pp. 256–7.
  3. ^ Norris, Herbert (2002). Church vestments : their origin & development. Mineola, N.Y.: Dover Publications. p. 177. ISBN 9780486422565.
  4. ^ Baumgarten, Barbara Dee (2002). Vestments for all seasons. Church Publishing, Inc. p. 22. ISBN 9780819225344.
  5. ^ "Trajes de Portugal: samarra".