Recently, the oldest bras in the world that we know of were found. The bras are from the 1400s and were discovered in an Austrian castle, The Daily News reports. So now, for the first time, we have proof that women in the Middle Ages were wearing bras. And not only that, but they were sexy ones decorated with lace. Lovely!
Before this discovery, it was thought that the bras that appeared in the 1800s were predated only by corsets (the modern bra was patented in 1914 by Mary Phelps Jacob, a socialite in New York). But now we have actual evidence that ladies wore the undergarments even before they began cinching up their waistlines with whale bone.
The bras were found under the floorboards of a second-floor room of the Lengberg Castle, which was renovated in the 15th century, says History BBC Magazine. Four linen bras were found, one that looks like a modern bra, one that is similar but has fabric for the rib cage to be laced up, and two that look like shirts with bags. Other garments were also found, including panty-like underwear, but it is unclear if these were worn by men or women.
We think it’s great that ladies were supporting their chests and looking stylish at the same time. However, as always, there were haters. An anonymous author of the time wrote a satirical poem that said: “Many [a woman] makes two breastbags [bags for the breasts], with them she roams the streets, so that all the young men that look at her, can see her beautiful breasts; But whose breasts are too large, makes tight pouches, so there is no gossip in the city about her big breasts.” Whatever, anonymous. You just wish you had nice soft pillows on your chest and lacy bags to put them in!
Images courtesy of BBC History Magazine