History Of Mattresses
History has shown, time and time again that the way we choose to sleep, will, affect our quality of life. We do not sleep on mattresses by mere coincidence, but rather because of a basic human need to sleep well. Thousands of years ago, in the Neolithic period, people had beds made of stone, but still slept on animal skin. Mattresses appeared around 5,000 years ago, but luxury mattresses began to appear as early as the decline of the Roman Empire. Velvet and silks were heavily used in the Renaissance, as well as lattice worked rope beds. Iron cast beds appeared in the early 19th century, springs only being introduced after the year 1865. Modern mattresses with inner spring workings were first commercialized before WW II. In the late 60?s memory oam was discovered, and by the 80?s cotton, foam and inner spring mattresses were all readily available around the world.
12,000 years ago before mattresses, people slept in caves, on the ground, on stone beds covered with animal skins while dreaming of touching the stars. In Scotland, primitive stone beds can be found in the Neolithic village of Skara Brae, with its advanced stone astronomical calendar. The development of the first cotton mattresses in Mesopotamia, Egypt and Babylonia, around 3,000 BC, brought with it a turning point in mattress evolution until the end of Antiquity around the year 529 AD, with the plunge into the Dark Ages.
In the eastern civilizations of China and Japan, the futon continued to evolve, as well as the tatami, but western culture seemed to be more interested in dry weeds, hay, wool, feathers and reads until the beginning of the age of rebirth around 1432 AD, with the death of Joan of Arc. Her sacrifice in ?La Place Rouge? in the city of Rouen, not only echoed through the royal courts of France, but carried with it the cry for an ?age of reason? throughout the entire known world. The Renaissance revived the passion for comfort and the value of a good nights sleep.
The passion for dreaming and enlightenment that fueled the Renaissance, survived all the way up to the 19th century with such works of art as the hand carved beds in the fantasy castle Neueschwanstein in Bavaria. But insect and mite free mattresses as we know them today began to appear as early as the late 1700?s with the first cast iron beds, with cotton mattresses. The need for hygiene and comfort led to the invention of springs. NASA brought about the invention of memory foam mattresses, which have shown time and time again to be far more efficient than the conventional spring-cotton design inherited from the Industrial Revolution.
In a quickly globalizing world, much can be learned by getting a good nights rest. In the dawn of civilization, humankind first learned to value their sleep and look to the stars. During the Middle Ages, western civilization slowly began the rebirth of its dreams, until 1969 when the first man landed on the moon, and they became reality. Now, in a rational world, made of glass and plastic towers, the race for comfort and a good nights sleep, depends on the mattress we use to face, this basic human need.
About the Author: Thomas Jay Wacker is the General Manager and V.P. of http://www.simplepedic.com. Wacker has over 20 years experience in the home furnishing industry and leads the Wacker Management Team in Denver Colorado.