Earrings: A Fashion That's Endured For Millennia!


Woman of Ancient Greece Wearing Hoop Earrings, Art Circa 1600BCE

Woman of Ancient Greece Wearing Hoop Earrings, Art Circa 1600BCE

The wearing of earrings is one of the oldest known forms of body decoration, possibly because the lobe is one of the easiest and most visible places to pierce. It was extremely popular in early Eastern cultures where there are known examples of pierced lobes and earrings dating back at least 5000 years, with statues from ancient civilisations and even Egyptian mummies sporting pierced lobes and ear jewellery. It's thought that thousands of years ago earrings may have been worn by both men and women to show your social status (wealthy or slave), your profession, or even to which tribe or warrior group you belonged.

Sasanian King c350AD

Bust of a Sasanian King (Persia/Iran), c 350AD

But the fashion for ear decoration has faded in and out of favour over the years for a number of reasons; for instance when fashions changed over the centuries to long hair or wigs worn around the face, or high elaborate (louse catching!) collars, or bonnets that fastened under the chin with a ribbon, then earrings were less frequently worn because they were obscured or could become tangled in clothing. Thankfully, though, earrings never truly went out of style, enjoying many fashion revivals!