A cloak is a type of loose garment worn over clothing, mostly but not always as outerwear for outdoor wear, serving the same purpose as an overcoat, protecting the wearer from the weather. It may form part of a uniform. People in many different societies may wear cloaks. Over time cloak designs have changed to match fashion and available textiles.
Cloaks generally fasten at the neck or over the shoulder, and vary in length from the hip all the way down to the ankle – mid-calf being the normal length. They may have an attached hood and may cover and fasten down the front, in which case they have holes or slits for the hands to pass through. However, cloaks are almost always sleeveless.
Christian clerics may wear a cappa or a cope – forms of cloak – as liturgical vestments or as part of a religious habit.