Having enough and comfortable sleep has always been an important issue for human beings.
We might imagine that early human rested easily on the ground carefree and with the least equipment! But no! How and where to sleep, has always been important for human being. Sometime aiming at creating and increasing security to save lives, another time for creating privacy, and today to increase comfort and relaxation!
The first beds
Although sleeping is the normal need of all human beings, meeting this need has always been a concern. About 7,000 years ago, human took refuge in top of the trees or slept in pits covered with wood and tree trunks to protect themselves from animals’ attack while sleeping. Sometimes they had to use different types of insect repellent plants, next to wood and tree trunks, to protect themselves from insect bites. In fact, first beds were trees’ stems and foliage that was far from today’s soft and comfortable bed and mattress. For centuries, the mattresses were full of feathers, straw, alfalfa and grass.
Bed in ancient times
As societies became more complex, the beds stood on feet! Pharaoh Ankh Amun (ʕankh-yamān), who ruled Egypt more than 3,300 years ago, slept on a raised bed covered with gold leaf. His tomb consisted of circumstantial beds adorned with sacred animal figures, symbolizing his journey to eternity. In the meantime, most ancient Egyptians slept on mattresses on the ground. At Skara Brae in Orkney Islands of Scotland, archaeologists have found evidences of box beds made of rock. And for thousands of years there has been no conspicuous change in the original shape of the bed. In Malta and Egypt, until 3,000 BC, people slept on high platforms with mattresses. In China and Mongolia, people slept on heated brick platforms dating back to 5000 BC, still are being used in north of China.
Bed in the Middle Ages
In the Middle Ages there was a great difference between the poor and the rich beds in a way that the poor slept on wicker mattress on the floor with any possible warm cover they could find.
But the rich's house equipped with large and luxurious beds, decorated by canopies, embroidered pendants having soft fabric mattresses with linen sheets.
Middle Ages beds were one of the most magnificent pieces of furniture in a large house. They were considered a good place to meet, talk or entertain guests.
From the Middle Ages to the 18th century, the bed was the most expensive item in a family home to the extent that they were considered as the sign of social prestige.
Beds were considered so valuable that they were often the first assets purchased by the new brides and the most important items given to the heirs of interest in the will.
The special place of the bed in the arrangement of the room shows the importance of the bed in the pre-modern world.
Developments in beds in modern era are related to the industry and technology growth on the one hand and aesthetic and artistic attitudes towards furniture on the other. This is in a way that the industrial revolution and spring coil invention in 1857, caused a revolution in mattresses and beds.
Development of industry and technology found its way also to the world of beds till finally the 21st century and the creation of smart items opens a new chapter in the history of beds.
In the modern world, different types of beds are made and used according to different art styles.
The smart beds measure more than 5.8 billion data points of full body biometric, sense the movements and automatically adjust the bed to ensure the best quality of sleep during the night. This technology tracks the quality of people sleep during the night and provides a report on individuals’ sleep to show the relationship between life and sleep.
Smart beds with dual feeling
The new generation of beds is expected to play a new role and be equipped with facilities to diagnose diseases. But will sleeping on these beds cause comfort?