Did you know that barbering is one of world’s oldest and most honorable profession, with a very interesting history. Read this article to find out more. 1.The word barber comes from the Latin word “barba”, meaning beard. In early ages, beards signified wisdom, strength, and manhood. 2. A barber’s razor was mentioned in the Old Testament. God instructs the prophet Ezekiel to “take a sharp sword and use it as a barber’s razor to shave your head and your beard”. 3. Barbering is one of the oldest professions in the world. There are tomb paintings from ancient Egypt that show a barber cutting hair, along with relics of razors nearly 6,000 years old.
4. It was in Greece during its Golden Age (500-300 BC) that barbering became a highly developed art. 5. In Egypt and other ancient cultures (as early as 3500 BC), barbers were often priests whose main job was to keep evil spirits from possessing people; they did this by trimming, styling and shaving off the hair through which demons liked to enter the body. 6. In the Middle Ages, barbers also treated wounds and performed surgery, they created ointments, and could give you a bath or crack your neck. Barbers competed with surgeons for their jobs, until the 1800’s when science caught up and more complex surgeries needed expert knowledge of biology. The “Father of Modern Surgery”, Ambroise Pare, started his career in the medical field as a barber/surgeon.
7. According to the Oxford Dictionary, “lotium” was a word for “stale urine used by barbers”. They used it as a kind of shampoo. 8. In the early 1900s an alternative word for barber, “chirotonsor”, came into use in the USA. 9. Many states in the USA require a barber license in order to practice barbering professionally.
10. Barber chairs in engravings from the Civil War era share many features with modern chairs, including high seating, upholstery, and a footrest. The first factory-manufactured chairs date to around 1850. The first one-piece reclining barber chair with an attached footrest was patented in 1878 by the Archer Company of Saint Louis.
11. The oldest surviving barber shop in the world is Truefitt and Hill in London, established in 1805. It now operates in 8 countries, Azerbaijan, South Korea, Canada, India, Thailand, USA, Singapore and Malaysia, offering professional haircuts and other grooming services.
12. The symbolic barber pole evolved from bloodletting. Some say the white represents the bandages, the red the blood, and the blue the veins.
13. The Barber’s Paradox – the barber is the “one who shaves all those, and those only, who do not shave themselves”. The question is, does the barber shave himself?