Medieval bras found in Austrian castle

Published on July 31st, 2012 | by Admin


Four bras dating back 600 years have been found at Lengberg Castle in Austria.

Though the first brassieres went into mass production roughly a century ago, thereby ushering in the rapid decline of the corset, no one can say for sure when bras were really invented. But archaeologists from the University of Innsbruck, Austria, have found something that could set the estimated date back by centuries.

“Up to now, there was nothing to indicate the existence of bras with clearly visible cups before the 19th century,” writes Beatrix Nutz, a university archaeologist. But now the university is proudly displaying four bras with “distinctly cut cups” dating back to the 15th century.

[Full story]

Story: | Photo: Innsbruck University

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3 Responses to Medieval bras found in Austrian castle

  1. BWA says:

    Surely the title goes back to the romans? The mosaics at the villa Armarina? (Or does bando swim wear not count?)

  2. Melissa Wells says:

    It looks like there was more material at the bottom at one time. I doubt they looked exactly like what we see here.

  3. Colleen Gau, PhD says:

    As a clothing historian and co-author of “Uplift: A HIstory of the Bra in America” I was fascinated to see this remarkable information. I would appreciate knowing more and would be happy to see details on design and stitching techniques. As an American HIstory intern at the Smithsonian, I took part in examining a 18thC Conneticutt family’s garments which included some items we labelled as “proto-brassieres.”
    I would appreciate a reply. I visit Innsbruk from time to time and would like to arrange to view the items if possible.
    Colleen Gau

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