Un marcel

15377B2E-6934-4DB7-BAA5-F7EEB0AB476DI always cringe when I hear the American expression “a wifebeater” to refer to a tank-style undershirt. The French term is much more civilized, un marcel. The shirt was first popularized in the middle of the 19th century by the workers at les Halles, the food market in the center of Paris. It’s called un marcel after its manufacturer, Marcel Eisenberg. It moved from being an undershirt to ubiquitous summer street wear; you’ll no doubt see a lot of them as the weather heats up.

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About Patricia Gilbert

Patricia Gilbert is a French teacher. She's Canadian, lives in the United States, but dreams of living in France. Follow her on Instagram @Onequalitythefinest and on Twitter @1qualthefinest.
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