This closely knitted woollen cap or coif would have been very warm and waterproof, protecting both the neck and ears with flaps. It may have been worn by a mature man, as shown in the drawings of the artist Hans Holbein the Younger (1497/8-1543).
A large number of 16th-century knitted caps, most of highly fashionable shape, have been discovered in Greater London in building sites. The location of the finds, allied to the fact that the caps are knitted, suggests that they were not intended for the upper strata of society, but rather for the middle classes.
This was found with eleven other caps in an old building in Worship street, London. All twelve caps were acquired by the museum in 1901.