1b. Brief History of Soap
Soap Manufacturing > 1. What is Soap
BRIEF HISTORY OF SOAP
- The first evidences of the soap using is dating back to the Babylonians. Clay cylinder containing residues of substances similar to soap (dating back to 2800 B.C.) have been found in Mesopotamia.
- An Egyptian papyrus dated 1550 B.C. (Ebers papyrus), explains that the ancient Egyptians produced a soap made by combining animal and vegetable oils with alkaline salts.
- The soap manufacturing was well known to the ancient Romans Plinio "the Elder" in his book "Historia Naturalis" cites the process by which the ash and fat could produce a detergents used to clean hair.
- Arabs regularly produced soap starting from olive oil. They were the first to use caustic soda (Al-Soda Al-Kawia). Since the beginning of the 7th century, soap was produced in Palestine, Iraq, and Syria. The Arab soap was colorful and fragrant. Some soaps were liquid and others were solid.
- Only in the 16th century the production of soap reaches Spain before moving to France and Italy. Many European cities boast of being the first to start the soap manufacturing in Europe: Marseille, Savona, Genoa etc. In addition, the English-speaking peoples were saying that the soap made from olive oil or exclusively from vegetable oils was called "Castile soap" and thus is attributed to a Spanish origin.
- The first industrial soap productions date back to the 19th century in England and then spread throughout the rest of the world. The first Soap Industries began to offer advertising campaigns. Indeed, in 1894 in New Zealand appeared slogan that advertised the soap on the back of postage stamps.
- In the second half of the 19th century, soap bars were commonly purchased and the Western countries tried to increase the use of soap bars, among the population by publicizing the relationship between personal health and hygiene.