The History of the Bed – Cosying up over the Century’s

Welcome to Mathy-By-Bols Week where we plan to bring the World’s most Unique and Unusual Kids Beds to life in a fun and informative way. Time traveling back to 77 000BC where in the Sibudu Cave, South Africa, a few hundred miles away from the Cradle of Humankind, the first bed was discovered that was no more than a mattress made of large flowering plants called sedges topped with a sheet of leaves and some poo. And to think in some cultures we’ve regressed and now sleep on hard floors! Now to keep this blog post interesting we’ve decided to sprinkle some bullets points into the mix in a highly original way.

  • But Africa’s miles away, what’s the earliest bed found in the UK? Answer: Raised boxes made of stone topped with fillers of hair and fur were found in a Northern Scottish Village – dating back to 3200 BC. Many believe that the fur was that of their partners (not really).
  • Pharaohs and Queens of Ancient Egypt had beds made with elaborate Head Rests, these beds were often ascended by steps and made of stone, metal or gilded wood and decorated with mother of pearl and ivory… which could, in fact have ignited the Ivory Trade. Not great so far, let’s look elsewhere…

a pharaohs childrens bed

  • Odysseus of the Greek Mythology fame (Trojan War and all that- around 1190 BC) made a bed out of a huge olive tree trunk for him and Penelope (his love of course) a bit of woven rope and some inlays of gold and silver. This is possibly the oldest account of a bed in the form we know it. Hmm…. it’s a myth, still not quite there…
  • Moving onto the Romans- bedsteads were even higher with more steps, back railings, raised section for the head, expensive hangings and counterpanes embroidered with gold figures. That’s more like it; trust the Romans to get this blog off to a grandiose start!
  • The four poster bed made its first appearance in 14th century Europe (the same time the feather bed became all the rage). A room within a room, the four poster bed sometimes had double curtains so thick not even the most blustery of drafts could get through.


traditional 4 poster bed

  • Same time, same place and the ‘Ruelle’ rose in popularity- it’s a place between bed and wall where lovers met before they… err, turned in for the night.
  • The 17th Century was known as ‘the century of the magnificent beds’ thanks mainly to flash git King Louis XIV who had around 413 beds in his various palaces. So much gold was used on his embroidery that the opulent crimson velvet fabric hardly showed through!
  • Surpassing all of this is the news that in 2014, Cuckooland became the Official Online Retailer of the Mathy-By-Bols Range of Unique Children’s BedsAs original and individual as the little munchkins who reside in them. Mathy-By-Bols is a boutique Children’s Bedroom Furniture Manufacturer, producing the highest quality Beds and Bedroom Furniture from deep within the Ardennes in Belgium!


unique childrens beds

Click here to view the full range of Mathy By Bols beds

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Coming soon… Top 10 Reasons why Children need to sleep.

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