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Parent Category: 18th Century History Articles
Category: Society and Culture

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Egyptian Pillows

Some of the first pillows were found in the ancient Egyptian pyramids and they served not for sleep, but in order to protect their hair while they're sleeping. The pillows of that time were made of wood, stone, porcelain or metal. In Japan, they were used until the nineteenth century.

For example, a wooden pillow was a concave plaque on a stand, with the image of some deity shielding the sleeper from the dark dreams. In China, special popularity among the nobility won the jade cushions. They were carved from solid stone in the form of a lying tiger, with a convenient notch for the head. Soon people rethought the purpose of the pillow realizing that the comfort of sleep is more important than the safety of the hairstyle. The Greeks made the pillows to the work of art, embroidering the covers with magnificent patterns. The decorative pillows were the privilege of a wealthy class since they were quite expensive, but they paid off more than enough to bring a healthy sleep.

The complication of the manufacture of dyes and sewing techniques led to the transformation of the pillow into an art object. Richly decorated pillows became an expensive hand-made product first in China, and later in Medieval Europe. Each pillow was made by hand and was a truly unique work of art. And in the modern world, the manufacture of decorative fabrics and pillows has become a mass production. The Romans, who captured the first pillows as a trophy, cautiously treated them at first. However, they appreciated the pillows fairly quickly. Particularly they liked cushions stuffed with goose down: to shoot wild geese the generals began to detach the most accurate warriors. Simple people used pillows filled with animal hair, feathers of birds or grass. The covers for them were made of cloth or leather.

One of the fastest and easiest ways to decorate and change the interior of a room - put on the bed or sofa a few beautifully designed pillows. Unlike tapestries, which hung on the walls of castles and palaces and could not spoil for centuries, the pillows used every day and night. Naturally, only a few of them have survived to this day. Therefore, most of the information on how the pillows looked like before, what they were made of and how they were used, we can see only from the paintings of artists describing the life of people of those times. Basically, the pillows in the interior began to depict by European painters, since the XVII century.

The History of Pillows You Didn't Already Know

In medieval Europe, they used special small pads under their feet. Since the floors in the castles were stone, and there was no central heating, these pads protected the feet from the cold.

Just at that time began to use pillows for prayer, they were put under their knees during long prayers. In France in the XVIII - XIX centuries, the right to get on the knees in the temple during prayer on the pillow immediately behind the king strictly regulated and jealously guarded in general. This pillow even had a special name - "carreau".

Today, there are a lot of different types of pillows: a cushions for rest and sleep (down and orthopedic neck pillows, latex pillows, etc.); supporting Tempurpedic cushions for the back, body and legs; decorative pillows of simple and unusual colors and shapes, made of different materials, decorating the interior. Depending on the type of filler they are natural and artificial, inflatable.