Furniture is any movable object that makes a space suitable to live in or work in. It supports human activity to suit various postures. This resource is constructed to suit the need and utility of the user and for the furniture site users. There are specialized furniture to play various roles and support seating, sleeping, working and storing. Furniture is a decorative art form. Apart from functionality, it has a significant place in religion too. It may be made of any material such as wood, stone, metal or plastic and take up any shape to suit the fancy of the creator and need of the user.
There is archaeological evidence that creation of furniture dates back to around 30000 years and then earliest forms of furniture were rocks and tree stumps. People constructed and carved furniture using stone, wood and even bones of animals. The earliest existing furniture was found in Skara Brae, Scotland a Neolithic stone-built settlement which includes furniture made of stone to include dressers, beds and cupboards. It is even older than the Stonehenge and Great pyramids.
Innovation in the construction of furniture with techniques such as joinery is evident from the early Egyptian dynasty to include stools, tables and even decorated items of metals and ivory. The decorated thrones found in ancient Greece and Rome signify the importance and value they were given. Klinai couches used for comfort, eating or sleeping date back to ancient times. Middle age saw the rise in wood furniture made of oak. The Italian renaissance saw further expansion in furniture design. The 17th century saw a rise in Baroque style which supposedly originated in Italy and Rome and spread throughout Europe. The 19th century is saw revivalism in furniture, which is the remaking of the ancient style of furniture. In the 20th century began the modernization of furniture.
An observation of ancient times and pre-modern times is that furniture was a luxury item. The rich Egyptians lived in grand and comfortable homes with wooden furniture including beds, headrests, chairs, tables and chests for storage. The ordinary people lived in homes made of mud and sat on wooden benches and used chests made of reed. The ancient Greek had basic furniture of wooden chests, pegs, couches of wooden frames with rope webbing to recline on. Rich Romans enjoyed a more luxurious life of wall paintings, hypocausts, oil lamps and couches. As always the furniture of the poor was basic.
Soon with the passage of time, furniture has modernized for comfort and style. Style can be anything that pleases the user. Modern furniture has seen the revival of styles and free adaptations. While the focus is on functionality, it also lays importance on aesthetic appeal. The material, make, color and texture of furniture are given precedence. Present day furniture is a mixture of different styles and preferences. Furniture has been classified according to functionality and is highly diversified. The furniture is designed to suit the user and the space that it is placed in. The cost of furniture too varies and is available over a wide price range depending on style and functionality.