A History of Chandeliers
Oct 25 2019
Chandeliers originate from the medieval era and were used by wealthy people as they provide sufficient light to some of their larger rooms and quarters. They generally took the form of a wooded cross with spikes on each corner where candles where situated; the device would then be hoisted upwards by a rope or a chain.
From being used solely for practical uses, this lighting device took on a whole new functionality in the 15th century. Their grand design, which was then easily manipulated, was a symbol of wealth and power; a feature that was quickly adopted by the noble, clergy and middle classes. Night time illumination was considered to be opulent and the result of have a certain status, something which the majority of people did not have the luxury of using. Rather than sticking with the primitive wooden cross and candles, people then manipulated the shape of the framework by using designs such as rings and crowns and then combining them with decorative features, such as jewellery.
Further developments in the 18th century alongside the technological advancements in the field of glass making; saw the introduction of 'lead crystals' - reflective glass which features light scattering properties. Not only was this something which made this style look much better aesthetically but as the light was reflected across the room, it helped to brighten all corners of the room without the use of additional candles. More intricate designs where now available and people where taking a lot more time during the design process.
The 19th century brought about the gas lamp, a remarkable advancement in lighting and illumination, which was quickly and swiftly incorporated into the chandelier design. In addition the old method in which the device was hoisted into the air was then replaced with suspended ceiling fittings. As electricity was introduced, it was gradually phased into the new design from 1890 onwards, until it had completely replaced the gas lamp in the late 20th century.
In the modern day, you can choose from a wide variety of this lighting option in such a fantastic selection of styles, types and designs - available for all budgets and room sizes. They are now used as more of a decorative fixture and compliment other features within a room. From being a luxury and a symbol of power and status, to becoming a standard lighting style, the chandelier has and always will be a favourite way of lighting the home.