It is also sometimes claimed that glasses were first invented in India. In 1907 Professor Berthold Laufer stated in his history of glasses that "the opinion that spectacles originated in India is of the greatest probability and that spectacles must have been known in India earlier than in Europe".
Now not so much. Oversized, bulky wire-framed glasses were favored in the 1970s. Now not so much. Now, retro glasses that for the past 40 years were unpopular, such as square, horn-rim and brow-line glasses, rule the optical rack. If you enjoyed reading about the history of eyeglasses, stay tuned for an upcoming look at the future of eyeglasses!
The history of glass-making dates back to at least 3600 years ago in Mesopotamia. However, some claim they may have been producing copies of glass objects from Egypt. Other archaeological evidence suggests that the first true glass was made in coastal north Syria, Mesopotamia or Egypt.
Eyeglasses History. The first vision aid, called a reading stone, was invented around 1000 AD. The reading stone was a glass sphere that was laid on top of the reading material to magnify the letters. The first wearable eye glasses were invented around 1284 in Italy. It is thought that Salvino D'Armate was their inventor.
Early Glasses. The first inventor of wearable glasses is unknown. However, the Romans first discovered the ability to use to glass to enhance their ability to see small text, creating small magnifying glasses with spheres. The first wearable glasses known to history appeared in Italy during the 13th century.
According to experts, glasses are the fifth most important invention since mankind discovered fire and invented the wheel. The reason: for the first time in human history, millions of people were able to enjoy good vision in spite of problems with their vision.
History of Eyeglasses The oldest known lens was found in the ruins of ancient Nineveh and was made of polished rock crystal, an inch and one-half in diameter. The rest of the history disputes the next listing. Spectacles Inventors Bacon, Keppler, Franklin, Airy, and Fick. Bifocals Eye glasses that see near and far.
Eyeglasses have been mentioned or referenced numerous times throughout history. Many speculate that eyeglasses are almost as old an invention as written history itself, while others take a more conservative belief that eyeglasses were initially invented in the dark ages around 1200-1300 a.d.
Eyeglasses came into greater fashion around 1752 when James Ayscough invented eyeglasses with hinged earpieces and tinted lenses, much like modern sunglasses. Around the same time, Benjamin Franklin invented the bifocal eyeglasses, allowing visually impaired individuals to read and see distances with the same spectacles for the first time.
The first pair of what we would consider eyeglasses appeared in the late 1200s in Pisa, Italy. These eyeglasses actually looked like two small magnifying glasses (made with convex-shaped glass) riveted together at the top of their handles.