Candles have a long and fascinating history spanning centuries and cultures. From the company's humble beginnings as a source of light to today's intricate and decorative creations, the evolution of candle making is a journey through time, reflecting advances in technology,changes in society and man's continued fascination with light and warmth.
Ancient Origins: Illuminating the Past
The history of candle making dates back to ancient civilizations when the need for portable and reliable light sources was greatest. The first candles were probably made by the ancient Egyptians, who rolled up sheets of papyrus and dipped them in animal fat. These early versions were rudimentary and used for lighting rather than aesthetics.
Candles also had spiritual meanings in different cultures. In ancient Rome, candles were commonly used in religious ceremonies and public events. It is believed that around as early as 200 BC, the Chinese made candles from a particular animal, in this case, whale fat. Decades later, technology has evolved , during this time, people begin to manufacter insect wax and seed.
What is more, Red candles in Chinese culture generally symbolize prosperity, harmony, good fortune, wealth, fame, happiness, success, warmth, and joy.
Medieval innovations: tallow and beeswax
As society progressed, so did candle making techniques. In the Middle Ages, tallow candles made from animal fat appeared.Tallow candles were inexpensive and widely available, one of the disadvantage would be that they emitted a significant amount of smoke and had an unpleasant odor. When it is burning, the smoke and odor can be very annoying to tolerate.
On the other hand,beeswax candles have become a luxury option. They burned cleaner and smelled pleasant when lit. However, beeswax was a valuable raw material and only the rich could afford such candles. The church often used beeswax candles in religious ceremonies.
The Industrial Revolution further revolutionized the manufacture of candles.The invention of the candle making machine in the 1830s enabled mass production and made candles available to the general public. This remarked a transition from candles to everyday item, which were a necessity, to a household staple, for both lighting and decorative purposes.
Modern Times: From Function to Art When electricity became the main source of light in the 20th century, candles were no longer a practical necessity but a symbol of relaxation, mood and celebration. The focus has shifted from utility to art and candle making has become a creative craft.
Candles today come in all shapes, sizes and scents.They are often made from a variety of materials, including soy wax, palm wax, and even gel. The art of candle making became a form of self-expression, with artisans experimenting with colour, scent and pattern to cater to different tastes and preferences.
All in all, despite the technological advances that have shaped our world, the appeal of candles remains strong. We still would enjoy the presence of candles because candles brings back our sentiments and emotional asssociations. Candles evoke a sense of security and serenity that transcends time and trends. To create a romantic atmosphere, celebrate special occasions or just enjoy a quiet evening, candles always play an important role in our lives.
By tracing the history of candle making, we discover a story that reflects human ingenuity, societal change, and cultural practices. From humble beginnings to artistic creations, candles not only light up physical spaces, but also the pages of history.
In summary, the way candles are made is a testament to human innovation and creativity. From the flickering flames of ancient Egypt to the scented candles of today's craft shops, the evolution of candles reflects our ongoing pursuit of practicality and beauty.