Chandeliers have been around for ages. The middle ages in fact. They started out as simple wooden crosses with spikes on them. They were hung from the ceiling by a rope that was tied to the wall or floor so that they could be raised or lowered. The chandelier was lowered to the floor, the candles were placed on the spikes then lit, and the whole thing was hoisted into place again. You can imagine how heavy they must have been, because they had to hold not only their own weight but that of the candles. You know how little light a candle gives out so they must've taken a lot of candles. Towards the end of the middle ages chandeliers (French for candlestick) became more fancy. As metalworking and woodworking progressed so did interior decoration. You can look at paintings from all periods and see chandeliers of all types and how they progressed as time passed. In Van Eyck Arnolfini portrait you can see an excellent example of a bronze mini chandelier hanging in the background. Since people started to live in apartments in the cities they didn't need the gigantic chandeliers they would in a castle.
Bronze Chandelier from 1434
If you've seen the Phantom of the Opera you certainly remember the famous chandelier scene. At the beginning of the musical different items are being auctioned off and the giant chandelier is one of them. The auctioneer even mentions it has been fitted for the “new” electric lights. Later in the story (told as flashbacks) the chandelier, presumably cut by the phantom crashes to the floor. Today you can get chandeliers in many shapes and sizes. Chandeliers became smaller and made out of brass with the advent of gas lights, these brass mini chandeliers were even called “gasoliers”.
Mini Chandeliers of All Types
You don't need the gigantic chandeliers of the past you can find mini chandeliers of all shapes and sizes. A mini crystal chandelier is probably what most people thing of when they think of a chandelier, but really you can get them in all shapes and size with chandelier shades and without. The term basically means a hanging light, since we don't use candlesticks any more. If you do want a mini candle chandelier you can still get them though, they have little electric bulbs that look like a candle flame. If a crystal chandelier is out of your price range you can get a glass mini chandelier, actually crystal is glass, just of a high quality and many times will contain lead. It tends to refract the light more than ordinary glass. A mini pendant chandelier differs from what you think of in a typical chandelier. Instead of having multiple arms with lights on each arm it has one central “pendant” where the light comes from. This kind hanging mini chandelier will look more modern than your typical candlestick style. The pendant can be made from glass, or cloth or even wood and contains the lights within it. If you're looking for a mini chandelier lamp they you can find all kinds to suit any taste and décor. There are arts and crafts styles made of wood and glass or bronze and glass, you can find medieval looking ones or something French provincial.
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