The first pieces of underwear can be traced back to the ancient civilizations of Egypt and Greece, when it seems their use was widely functional. Women of Crete,
as brassiere history goes,
were and are known to have worn a simple corset that supported their breasts at the base and a very early prototype of the bra, known as a strophium, was in use in Roman times. Brassiere, which can also be referred to as bra, is commonly acknowledged as an exclusively useful invention. Brassiere history shows that numerous attempts were undertaken to improve this foundation garment and thus made woman’s life easier and more comfortable. There are some adherents to the natural look of female breasts, but even they can’t deny the significance of brassiere invention.
The majority of women acknowledge the absolute need for brassiere. Brassiere history from its very dawn has been based on exclusively anatomic considerations. Speaking in biological terms, female breasts are made of adipose tissue, which is provides very little support. A certain kind of additional support to the female breasts was provided by Mother Nature in the form of ligaments as the essential components of the skin covering the breasts. However, this natural anatomic support for the female breasts is insufficient. It is not enough to eliminate the discomfort and pain that is caused by the movements of breasts. Modern brassiere is the result of important transformations of earlier inventions in order to secure the best performance of this piece of underwear. It is understood that the changes in the condition of female breasts that come with the age are inevitable. However, women are not willing to resign themselves to their breasts becoming flaccid and sagging. Brassiere history amply shows the aspiration of various inventors in different epochs towards stopping the time when it comes to preservation of the youthful shape of female breasts.
In the Middle Ages, members of the European nobility began to wear straightforward linen clothes under richly decorated and expensive outer dresses. This both protected these luxurious costumes from dirty bodies, and provided a layer of warmth for the wearer. Small, firm breasts were back in vogue, and women wore a multitude of corset-like variations. Brassiere history
shpws, that these early forms of the corset generally emerged in the fifteenth century. The rigid centrepiece, known as the basque, was often decoratively carved and enjoyed a trend as a lover's token.
In the medical circles there are certain doubts regarding the influence of brassiere wearing on the preservation of the youthful shape of female breasts. Mention must be made of the fact that experiments have not yielded solid evidence of the positive effects of brassiere on the condition of breasts. It is a fallacious belief that if a woman doesn’t wear a brassiere in her younger days, her breasts will look more sagging later in her life. Still, with the preservation effect being quite questionable, the need for brassiere can’t be denied. It is fully justified by social reasons and the considerations of comfort. The history of brassiere is very ancient and goes back to the dawn of humanity and civilization. This fact is very telling of the continuous evolution of this item of underwear. The concept of covering female breasts has its roots in the ancient times. It is interesting to know that in Sparta the prototype of the modern brassiere served primarily for the purpose of making the female breasts look smaller, so that they would look more like men’s. that for external support of female breasts, but for making them look smaller. The history of brassiere accentuates the role of French inventors in improving the look of this foundation garment. The first patent for brassiere in the USA was given to Mary Jacob, which was a crucial stage in the brassiere history.