I must say I believed the story that barristers’ gowns had a pocket on them because they were not allowed to sue for fees and some money could discreetly be put in there by the client. However, it appears that that story was an invention and the pocket (known as a liripipe) is the remnant of a mourning hood assumed on the death of King Charles II in 1685.
See The junior barrister’s gown on Sir Henry Brooke’s site Musings, Memories and Miscellanea.
As I have frequently posted – e.g. here -, the image of a gavel is often used in British and German newspapers to illustrate a court judgment. But UK and German judges don’t use gavels. Judges in the USA use them. In the UK, the gavel or hammer is what an auctioneer uses.
I don’t suppose everyone would understand how irritating it is to keep seeing this totally inappropriate image. But one site that does is Inappropriate Gavels. They tweet at @igavels too, and there’s no lack of examples in the press.
It strikes me that the gavel is a good image to use – stock image companies are full of them. alamy reports 28.294 images of gavels. So we need an alternative image.
The only commonly used image for a court decision apart from gavels is the scales of justice, sometimes held by a woman. alamy seems to have 6,937 of those. Maybe we should be encouraging good images of the scales of justice if we are to eradicate the gavel.
Here’s a Guardian article on Inappropriate Gavels, with comments, from the year 2015: Gavel bashing: why banging in court on TV is a serious factual offence.
In Sclater Street:
STREET ART TOURS ARE ILLEGAL
YOU COULD BE ARRESTED FINED & OR IMPRISONED
UNDER ANTI-TERROR LAWS*
*OR OUR GENERAL MODUS OPERANDI THAT
IF WE DON’T UNDERSTAND IT WE’LL SHUT IT DOWN ANYWAY
JUST IN CASE
(UNLESS YOU’RE A MEDIA MOGUL OR HAVE SOMETHING ON US OR BOTH)
Because you just can’t be trusted