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HANDKERCHIEFS

HANDKERCHIEFS

Handkerchief

(also called a

hanky

or, historically, a

handkercher

) is a form of a kerchief, typically a hemmed square of thin fabric or paper which can be carried in the pocket or handbag, and which is intended for personal hygiene purposes such as wiping one's hands or face, or blowing one’s nose. A handkerchief is also sometimes used as a purely decorative accessory in a suit pocket, it is then called a
pocket square
. It is also an important accessory in many folkdances in many regions like the Balkans and the Middle East; an example of a folkdance using handkerchiefs is Kalamatianos.
 
The material of a handkerchief can be symbolic of the socioeconomic class of the user, not only because some materials are more expensive, but because some materials are more absorbent and practical for those who use a handkerchief for more than style. Handkerchiefs can be made of cotton, cotton-synthetic blend, synthetic fabric, silk, or linen.