Using the names of hominid species that preceded us to make fun of someone's boorishness, you know. Australopithecus, Cro-Magnon, Neanderthal… these are qualifiers that are far from flattering. But if our ancestors did not have the most advantageous looks or manners worthy of Nadine de Rothschild, they were far from being stupid. And they even made an effort to be presentable. As proof, Neanderthal man adorns himself with jewelry.
Men's jewellery: a history that dates back to time immemorial
In the 2000s, men's jewelry, apart from traditional wedding rings or cufflinks, was still reserved for originals or stars who weren't afraid to get wet when it came to the mode. Recently this has changed, with more and more of these gentlemen no longer hesitating to wear one or more men's bracelets, or even a necklace. In addition to the decidedly masculine pieces that can be found in online men's jewelry stores, there are also unisex collections that challenge traditional gender boundaries.
But what seems revolutionary and so avant-garde today was completely normal... several centuries ago, or even during Prehistory. This has something to call into question the degree of evolution that our societies think they have reached. When you think about it, our famous modern era is only beginning to encompass concepts that were in effect long ago in certain civilizations. Whether in terms of the mixing of races under Alexander the Great, the place of women in certain matriarchal societies or, more incidentally, men's jewelry.
In many cultures, jewellery was a pleasure shared by both sexes. From American Indians to Aztecs to Egyptian kings and queens to Indian Maharajas, the question of whether jewelry can be worn by men would have been a stupid question to ask. The rise of male bracelets and necklaces is therefore only a return to normal of a thousand-year-old trend.
Even Neanderthals wore jewelry
The Neanderthal, symbol par excellence of the "nag", could teach us a few lessons on the subject. As paleontologist Anne-Marie Moigne explains, despite his unattractive physique, he had a very developed brain. And, apparently, this intelligence drove him to take care of his appearance and cultivate a taste for beauty. He was a great collector of bones, and he liked to wear jewelry. Making it more than ever very 3rd millennium, the Neanderthals also appreciated tattoos, which they made with ocher powder.
If you're still hesitating to wear jewelry, this might convince you. Neanderthal man had far fewer questions about it, and certainly not because he was stupid.