History of bracelets

Posted by Cristina Bet on

 Bracelet is a form of jewelry worn in order to embellish the wrist. Wearing it as an ornament can be considered as the most common use, however it can also be worn as a support for things like charms or wearing it as a marking system for different matters, like medical ID tags. When wearing it as an ornament, it can take different meanings like beauty and aesthetics, breast cancer awareness, cultural or even religious purposes. 

As materials used in the manufacture of bracelets can be leather, metal, plastic, cloth, wood, rocks and many others.

The history of bracelets is a heavily debated subject, the exact early development of it still being unknown. It was proven through archaeological evidence, that even in 5,000 B.C. it was common for Ancient Egyptians to wear bracelets. However, it was later stated that this wasn't the starting period of this accessory. 

In 1995 ,Turkey discovered a bracelet which is estimated to be from 7,500 BC, which was not clearly the first of its kind. This discovery made certain that the creation of bracelets was even older than we thought, and the exact origin is still unknown.

 

Different ethnic groups have worn this jewelry for variety of reasons. Egyptians were wearing it for spiritual and religious interests, using materials like bones or stones in creating the bracelet. The National Geographic Society states, that a important and widely recognized symbol on the Ancient Egypt civilization is the scarab Bracelet, Holding the significance of rebirth and regeneration. The carved scarabs were worn as common jewelry pieces, and as a tradition, they were later wrapped into the bandages of mummies. 

Another civilization example in which bracelets share a rich history is the Chinese civilization, a specific practice to this culture was carving intricate bracelets like cuffs and bangles from jade, this having its history dated as early as 2000 B.C. Another traditional practice was the etched elaborate designs and patterns of various mythical creatures and animals, which were very valued and appreciated at the time.

Gold was a very used and common material for bracelets in India as well. However later in the years, it was switched to materials like glass beads or colorful metals.

In the 17th century, bracelets became an essential part of the accessory collections of women in that period. It became a fashionable element. The design started to consist of chains, and small charms started to be attached to it, like lockets or different types of medallions.

The evolution of bracelets was in continuous development, and by the end of 20th century, it became a mass-produced piece in almost every design imaginable. In 1970 the range got even wider, and men’s bracelet became to gain popularity as well.

Reaching the present, we can see many popular bracelets designs, from handmade to manufactured, we can witness designs for any type of character, age, gender or culture. Even though, the history of bracelets, dates even before the written and existent records, we can conclude that through time, it changed continuously, and, thus, in the future it will continue to change and more types of bracelets with meanings will appear.

Resources:

Curtis 2014, The history of bracelets around the world, viewed 18.02.2019http://blog.usantiqueshows.com/2014/09/25/the-history-of-bracelets-around-the-world/

 

2016, The history of bracelets, viewed 18.02.2019 https://www.corazonlatino.com/blog/the-history-of-bracelets-and-their-impact-on-modern-jewellery/ 

 

Wikipedia 1018, Bracelet, viewed 18.02.2019 viewed 18.02.2019 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bracelet 


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