The History of Glasses

No one exactly knows who made the first pair of glasses in the world…



In 1266th, Roger Bacon was increasing letter by placing a piece of a glass ball on books.


But who was the first to think of putting the glass close to the eye and keeping it there, we do not know with certainty.

In the portrait of Cardinal Ugon, which is depicted in 1352, the Cardinal was presented with two framed lenses, whose handles are hooked for one another and fastened above the eyes. Therefore, someone has probably invented glasses between 1266 and 1352. When printed books appeared, the need for glasses suddenly occurred. Since people working with glass at that time were mostly in northern Italy and southern Germany, most of the glasses in the 16th century were manufactured there.


In 1629, English King Charles I granted a charter to the association of manufacturers of glasses.

Franklin invented the bifocal glasses (with two spots).


Today, in addition to helping people to more easily read and see better, glasses are used in many other purposes. We know that dark glasses soften brilliant light, while color glasses help with the detection of camouflage.

Glasses that absorb ultraviolet rays are worn by skiers, aviatosr, polar explorers and mountaineers.

Workers who work in the immediate vicinity of large furnaces for melting metal wear glasses that stop infrared light.

New types of glasses are constantly invented, to help people who have special problems in their work.


Today, there are these kinds of glasses:


  • Corrective – adjust focal distance to the eye, to mitigate the effect of short-sightedness (myopia), farsightedness (hyperopia) or astigmatism
  • Safety – usually made of plastic lenses resistant to breakage, in order to protect the eyes from flying particles
  • Sunglasses – with lenses that are prescribed or those without a prescription; which are darkened to protect from sunlight and ultraviolet radiation
  • 3D glasses – that provide three-dimensional illusion on a two-dimensional surface



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