Sunglasses Through History

The tinted shades of illusion. Hide what you are experiencing and what you should not be watching. A world of riddles and a game of hide and seek. Dark glasses, a protection against stares and glares. Sunglasses were built for protecting the optics against the harmful UV or the ultraviolet beams of the sun. A protection for the eyes from dust, dirt, smoke, diseases, strain, glares or just an easygoing fashion wear to hide from your supporters and followers. Let us breeze through the history of the invention of sunglasses.

History Behind Sunglasses
Sunglasses and the Story Behind Their Invention

A Sunny History

Sunglasses with a history!!! Amazingly true. The ordinary plastic framed, tinted glasses have a special place in history. No, you don’t have to learn about it in your school or answer tests on it. Aha, I can sense the grin. So glares were the invention of the Inuit’s who decided that enough was enough and that their eyes needed to be shielded from the bright orange ball of fire, and thus the first compact walrus ivory glares were invented.

Vintage Sunglasses
Ancient Glares

The Chinese and Their Sunglasses

Next in line were the Chinese, who too did their own thing with glares. They invented the special crystal eyeshades. These glasses were not to protect the wearer from the anger of the sun but were made to protect the judges in the court of law from the anger of the prisoners who were punished. These eyeshades helped to hide the facial expressions of the Chinese judges.
Sunglasses To Block ExpressionsThe Chinese and Their Sunglasses

The Roman Connection

The Romans were not far behind, the Roman emperor, Nero, who was very much into lions and gladiators and such other fiery stuff, felt that by watching the gladiators fighting through special vision providers would be more fitting for an emperor of his status. Thus, he used polished emeralds to watch the fighting arena.

Roman Connection - Sunglasses
Sunglasses Were Worn By The Romans

Glasses Continued To Be Used For Judicial Use

Glasses from China were introduced to Italy around 1430. Again, they were put to use for judicial use rather than use them as sun protecting glasses.

Sunglasses for Judicial Use
Law and Sunglasses

The Chinese Again

Now we come back to the Chinese again, who now had a new type of sunglasses in the 12th century; these glasses only protected the wearer from the harsh glare of the sun and did nothing to improve the wearer’s vision or to block the harmful UV rays of the sun. These flat panes made of smoky quartz were actually sunglasses, as they did what their name suggested; protect the eyes from the sun.

Chinese and Their Ancient Sunglasses
Sunglasses Modified by The Chinese

Sunny Days Ahead

The glares went through many changes in the past and are going through many changes in the present. One cannot forget James Ayscough, the man who brought eyeshades to the masses as he believed that blue and green tinted lenses could be used to correct imperfect visions. Vision, which were affected by Syphilis, could be corrected by wearing sunglasses tinted with yellow-amber and brown.

Sunglasses for Heath
Experiments with Sunglasses

The American Touch

In 1929, the first sunglasses were marketed by Sam Foster, on the beaches of the Atlantic City, New Jersey, in America, by the name of Fosters, in the Woolworth Store. These glares were sold to protect the eyes from the rays of the sun.

Sunglasses as Fashion Fad
Fashion With Sunglasses

Hollywood Takes a Note

The next entry into the field of making and selling sunglasses was Edwin H Land, who patented his Polaroid filter glares, in 1936. The rest is history. Glares became a rage when Hollywood stars started wearing them and the use of shades spread like a wildfire, when Ray Bans created anti-glare aviator styled glasses for the soldiers in the World War II.1937, saw the spread of these new Ray Ban shades, in America.

Sunglasses For Armymen
The Soldiers and Their Sunglasses

“I am Lost in Your Blue Eyes”.

Let us use this beautiful quote when we describe the awe and magnetism a face creates when it has an attractive blue, green and brown, golden, gray or a misty white lens of a designer sunglass covering their appealing eyes.

Sunglasses by Celebrities
Stars and Glares

It is the great actors and actresses of our times who are responsible for the popularity of Glasses. The need to hide their red-rimmed eyes from the harsh lights of the sets or the dark circles under their eyes due to sleepless nights. This encouraged the makers of shades to use the tinted material as lenses for their Glasses and 20 million Glasses were sold as fashion apparel in America. Stunned by a pair of eye concealers or should we say sun protectors.

Sunglasses on the Go

Prada and Chanel compete with Ray-Ban and Oakley to make the most striking, eye-catching appealing alluring and charming glares available with small frames, pleasing plastic frames, wiry, flowery, cat-eyed and with the big and the bold frames.

Sunglasses by Ray-Ban
Sunglasses A Booming Business

A huge industry has developed around the fact that dark shades protect the eyes from UV rays. Glares help you look chic and classy. And finally, what has the sun got to do with glasses? Definitely more than just protect your eyes. So ladies and gentleman, thrust out your chin, put up your nose, and look up to the heavens above, you are wearing nothing else but the most sophisticated Glasses to safeguard your eyes against the wrath of nature.