The umbrella was not originally designed to keep us dry, it was created to provide shade. And that was thousands of years ago, probably in the Middle East where sunburns were a real problem!
It provided shade, not only protection and in some cases could have dropped the temperature by as much as ten degrees. It did eventually become protection from the rain, snow and anything else that might fall on you except for maybe an anvil.
In England it became a fashion statement and still is. The styles and shapes have changed but the purpose stays the same. The curved handle was made just to fit over the arm so that it was easy to carry when not in use.
Such a simple tool that has so many uses and makes such a fashion statement.
How to celebrate – If you don’t have one, get an umbrella. Find an umbrella that fits your personality. Stay dry!
No one seems to know exactly when or where, or for that matter who, invented the umbrella. It is first credited to Wang Mang in 21 AD when Wang Mang wanted some shade provided to his carriage.
The umbrella is a very useful tool. It is used to keep us dry when it is raining, cool when the sun is shining and keeps things from falling on our heads. Just think, if Issac Newton had been using an umbrella the day the apple fell on his head we might not know anything about gravity.
In many places in the world the umbrella is a fashion statement. It does bring people together, particularly in a storm can be used as a defensive weapon if required. It can also be a pain in the butt! I know when I try to use one I get wetter while trying to get it open than if I had just on without it! Still, I suppose it is better than nothing!
And of course Mary Poppins would be nowhere without her umbrella. In fact many fictional characters carry an umbrella… Where would the Penguin be without his umbrella against Batman!? Astell, an anime or Disney’s Jiminy Cricket.
So whether you call it an sunshade, parasol, brolly, parapluie, rainshade, gamp or bumbershoot… today is your day to use your umbrella with pride and show it off to the world!
How to celebrate – Use your umbrella today whether it’s raining or not. Incorporate an umbrella into your daily outfit. Count how many umbrellas you see in use today.