often habiliments, early 15c., ablement, "munitions, weapons," from Old French habillement, abillement, from abiller "prepare or fit out," probably from abile, habile "fit, suitable," from Latin habilem, habilis "easily handled, apt," verbal adjective from habere "to hold" (from PIE root *ghabh- "to give or receive"). An alternative etymology [Barnhart, Klein] makes the French verb originally mean "reduce a tree by stripping off the branches," from a- "to" + bille "stick of wood." Sense of "clothing, dress" developed late 15c., by association with habit (n.).
"The habiliments of the two forms of larks are more divergent than would appear at first blush. Above, the coloration of neglecta (the western) is paler and grayer than that of magna, the black markings being less conspicuous, and those on the tertials and middle tail-feathers being arranged in narrow, isolated bars, and not connected along the shaft" (Birds of the Rockies, Leander Sylvester Keyser, McClurg, 1902).
"If there is anything shabby or deficient in the attire of a specimen, it is usually safe in spring to relegate it to the female persuasion, although in many cases the young males are condemned to wear the mean habiliments of the female until they have gained their glorious prerogatives (The Birds' Calendar, H. E. Parkhurst, 1894). 041b061a72