CRAVAT (from the Fr. cravate, a corruption of "Croat"), the name given by the French in the reign of Louis XIV. to the scarf worn by the Croatian soldiers enlisted in the royal Croatian regiment. Made of linen or muslin with broad edges of lace, it became fashionable, and the name was applied both in England and France to various forms of neckerchief worn at different times, from the loosely tied lace cravat with long flowing ends, called a "Steinkirk" from the battle of 1692 of that name, to the elaborately folded and lightly starched linen or cambric neckcloth worn during the period of Beau Brummell.
Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)