Why did Messi wear a bisht at the World Cup, and what does it mean?
The emir of Qatar presented Lionel Messi with a bisht, a traditional Arab cloak, to wear at the World Cup trophy presentation following Argentina’s victory over France in the final on Sunday.
Before taking the World Cup trophy from FIFA President Gianni Infantino and lifting it in front of his ecstatic teammates, Messi allowed Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to place the robe on his shoulders.
Who Can Wear A Bisht?
When attending al-t al-Jumuah or Salat al-Janazah, or on special occasions like weddings or festivals like Eid, a bisht is typically worn for prestige.
It is generally worn on top of a thawb, kanzu, or tunic by secular officials or clergy, such as tribal chiefs, kings, and imams.
According to Mustafa Baig, a lecturer in Islamic studies at the University of Exeter, the bisht would therefore only be worn by a select few individuals.
In a sense, they were honouring Messi by placing it over his shoulders. It serves as a sort of welcome and acceptance into the culture as well as a mark of honour, he explained.
Also, It serves as a representation of Qatari national dress, as per Baig, but only on special occasions.
What is Thawb?
In the Arabian Peninsula, men frequently don thawbs. Cotton is typically used, but heavier fabrics like sheep’s wool can also be used in colder climates like Iraq and Syria.
The various regions in the area have slightly different thawb styles.
Why Did Messi Wear A Bisht?
In a sense, they were honouring Messi by placing it over his shoulders. It serves as a sort of welcome and acceptance into the culture as well as a mark of honour.
Baig said, “This is a great opportunity. They put it on him as a mark of honour because, in my opinion, there probably isn’t a bigger occasion”.
Messi’s “embracing of the local culture,” according to Baig, also thought it was “pretty cool” of Qatar to do and “smart thinking” on their part.
What were the organisers’ remarks?
The World Cup in Qatar’s organising committee secretary-general, Hassan al-Thawadi, stated: “It is a dress for an official occasion and worn for celebrations.
“We had the chance to introduce the world to our Arab and Muslim cultures during the World Cup. This was a regional celebration; it had nothing to do with Qatar, he said.