In the eighteenth century the French Comte d'Artois owned a set of diamond buttons, each of which had a miniature clock encased inside it.
The French philosopher Voltaire owned eighty Canes His contemporary, Jean Jacques Rousseau, owned forty Canes in fact were in great vogue in eighteenth-century France, and women as well as men carried them. Women's Canes often came equipped with perfume bottles, music boxes, or romantic pictures hidden inside.
To preserve their elaborate coiffures, Geishas in ancient Japan slept with their heads on bags filled with buckwheat chaff.
In 1400 B.C. it was the fashion among rich Egyptian women to place a large cone of scented Grease on top of their heads and keep it there all day. As the day wore on, the Grease melted and dripped down over their bodies, covering their skin with an oily, glistening sheen and bathing their clothes in fragrance.
The Greeks in the time of Alexander the Great liked blond hair as much as we do today. Men and women alike bleached their locks with potash water and herbal infusions, creating a reddish-blond color considered to be the height of style and beauty.
During the Renaissance, fashionable aristocratic Italian women shaved their hair several inches back from their natural hairlines.
The San Blas Indian women of Panama consider giant noses a mark of great beauty. They paint black lines down the center of their noses to make them appear longer. Among San Bias men, an enormous nose is the mark of a great leader.
In India it is perfectly proper for men to wear Pajamas in public. Pajamas are accepted as standard daytime wearing apparel.
It was the style among eighteenth-century Englishmen to wear Pantaloons so tight they had to be hung on special pegs that held them open, allowing the wearer to ]ump down into them This was the only way fashionable gentlemen could get their trousers to fit properly.
In 1500 B.C. in Egypt a shaved head was considered the Ultlmate in feminine beauty. Egyptian women removed every hair from their heads with special gold tweezers and polished their scalps to a high sheen with buffing cloths.
In nineteenth-century England it was considered vulgar to hold an Umbrella under one's arm, Well-bred people gripped their Umbrellas in the middle, with the handle turned toward the ground. Only silk Umbrellas were considered fashionable by the British upper crust, and these only if they were blue or green. For the general public, moreover, Umbrellas were an unaffordable luxury. When it rained the ordinary man or woman would hire an Umbrella from a local stand, usually at the cost of one and a half pence per hour.
In eighteenth-century England, women's wigs were sometimes 4 feet high. These remarkable headdresses were dusted with flour and decorated with Stuffed birds, replicas of gardens, plates of fruit, or even model ships. Sometimes the wigs were so elaborate they were worn continuously for several months. They were matted with lard to keep them from coming apart, which made mice and insects a constant hazard. Special pillows had to be constructed to hold these giant creations, and rat-resistant caps made of gilt wire were common items. Mercifully, the wig craze died out quite suddenly in England in 1795, when a hair-powder tax made their upkeep too expensive.