600-year-old bras found in castle
A REVOLUTIONARY discovery has hit the world of underwear – women 600 years ago wore bras.
The University of Innsbruck says archaeologists found four linen bras dating from the Middle Ages in an Austrian castle.
Fashion experts describe the find as surprising because the bra had commonly been thought to be only little more than 100 years old as women abandoned the tight corset.
Instead, it appears the bra came first, followed by the corset, followed by the reinvented bra.
One specimen in particular “looks exactly like a (modern) brassiere”, says Hilary Davidson, fashion curator for the London Museum.
“These are amazing finds.”
The university says the four bras were among more than 2700 textile fragments – some linen, others linen combined with cotton – found intermixed with dirt, wood, straw and pieces of leather.
“Four linen textiles resemble modern-time bras” with distinct cups and one in particular looks like today’s version, it says in a statement, with “two broad shoulder straps and a possible back strap, not preserved but indicated by partially torn edges of the cups onto which it was attached”.
And the lingerie was not only functional. The bras were intricately decorated with lace and other ornamentation, the statement says, suggesting they were also meant to please a suitor.