Brigandine question...
... Are there any historic examples of men wearing a brigandine over a surcoat or surcoat-like garment, rather than under it?
Wearing it this way was always more comfortable for me, though I know it seems to be like wearing your undies on over your trousers. (especially when fruit of the loom is the house you're representing, hehe.)
I was just wondering... I'd hate to sacrifice that comfort if I didn't have to.
There are several theories for the surcoat. One is to display a coat of arms. Another is to keep off the sun. Both require it to be worn on the outside.
You could just make/buy another one I guess.
I don't see why you couldn't wear it underneath unless your group says otherwise or if you had to wear it over the top, but yeah, basically what Dan said.[/i]
The "sur" in surcoat, means "on". If you wanted to say something is on the table, you'd say "sur le/la table" (I forget the gender of the table, but you get the idea). If it is truly a surcoat, it should be the top layer, since "on top of" is kind of the etymological point of the name.

Other garments, though, would have been worn beneath a brigandine. Depending on the era, it could be an aketon or an arming doublet or a pourpoint or something else.

Brigandines are most associated with the 15th century and later. The under-garment would likely be an arming doublet in that case. If a heraldic garment is worn over everything (as was sometimes done in the 15th century) it would probably not be called a surcoat, but a tabard.

Check out our article on Quilted Armour Defenses for some more info.
Thanks everyone for answering.
Aside from comfort, the only reason it's an issue for me at all is that I've always preferred my lower half with something draped well over my chausses, but dislike covering up my armor.

In the interim between posting and now I've found a solution in a very long gambeson I found online (I don't know what the policy on posting to products is, so I'll refrain.) it preserves the look and comfort I'm after without being too terribly anachronistic.

Thank you Chad for the in-depth response! I knew about the "Sur" But I wasn't sure how rigid the etymology stayed.
(Sort of like how blue jeans are sometimes called so even if they're black.) Thanks for confirming that.
I'd never wear a heraldic garment underneath anything, but as I don't belong to any group (the past is very dead here in Shasta county CA, haha) It's not really an issue for me.

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