Girdles are straps of fabric, or in some cases metal, that are worn around the waist. In ancient Egypt, the goddess Isis wore a girdle called a tyet. Women in ancient Egypt wore an Isis knot tied around their waist. This symbolized protection.
In the Christian tradition, a girdle is worn around the waist. The girdle was sometimes used to hold the Bible. If a girdle was wrapped around a holy Christian man three times it symbolized chastity, poverty, and obedience. The vows were taken by monks and other holy men. Chaste women wore girdles in ancient Christian literature. Girdles also symbolize preparation in Christianity. In the New Testament Jesus says wearing a girdle symbolizes keenness for service and preparation. A person wearing a girdle is ready to go when summoned.