As the world turns and continues to evolve so do our marvelous beards. And for as long as man has grown out his whiskers, the hands of history have continued to log some pretty crazy theories about our beards. So today, here are 4 Rather Crazy Beard Beliefs Right From The History Books...
ONCE UPON A TIME BEARDS WERE TAXED!
There was once a man named 'Peter The Great' of Russia, who in the year of 1698 decided to kick his fellow beardsmen into line by slapping down a rather hefty tax upon growing a beard. For every man who so wished to grow out his whiskers would have to pay the state for the privilege, and in return you would be granted a special coin-like token, stamped with a beard icon upon it which proved that you have paid such taxes and were allowed to sport your glorious beard to all the land. This crazy and rather extravagant behaviour continued on for a whopping 74 years before it finally being axed in 1772. And thankfully so!
GOATS BEARDS WERE CONSIDERED A SIGN OF LUST AND EVIL!
In Medieval times folks had a rather confusing (and slightly warped!) view about bearded goats. (Yes, you read correctly. Bearded. Goats.) Some said pointed goat beards were a symbol of seduction and lust to lure innocent women to be led astray, whereas others strongly believed they were a sign of evil and in particular the Devil himself. But what lead them to such strong beliefs? The personification of Lust was thought to have road on a goat, and Jewish folk who were heavily punished by prejudice during the medieval era were said to also have goat-like facial hair. Thankfully such blasphemy has now been firmly left where it belongs as both man and beard continue to evolve.
NO BEARD? THEN YOU ARE CLEARLY WEAK!
According to 1850's published 'The Philosophy Of Beards' they believe 'The absence of a beard is usually a sign on physical and moral weakness.' Whilst that seems ludicrously insane such statements has a rather sinister side to them as well. In the late 19th century a collection of scientists studied males and believed that men from different races who typically grew out much thinner facial hair were considered to be weaker in comparison to another. A truly tragic ''study'' I'm sure you'd agree. In today's times and society many beards are considered equally impressive and unique to the beholder, and rightfully so say we!
ANCIENT EGYPT PRAISED BEARDED KINGS (AND QUEENS!)
Throughout the history books Egyptian kings, gods and Pharaohs have been depicted to have bold visible beards. Although the secret is many of them were in fact fake. Facial hair was a symbol of power, strength and fortune, so to perceive a king or leader without a beard was unheard of in Ancient Egypt. So much so that the only female Pharaoh, known as 'Hatshepsut' may have struggled to get full authority and respect mongst her peers being a female leader. She negotiated a way around the obstacle by making sure that all of her official statues and painted portraits displayed her with a fake beard stuck onto her chin to help symbolise her standing. Everyone was very much aware that she was a woman, but everyone expected Pharaohs to sport a beard. So that is exactly what she did. Bravo on the ideas I say!
So, there you have it, 4 rather interesting views on how history have perceived our face forests. As always let us have any thoughts comments or beardy related questions in the section you'll find so kindly provided below.