Men of History, Why Did You Grow Your Beards?

Hey, Charlemagne! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? Oh, I just wasn’t doing much one day and he started taking over my chin, and I thought: My, aren’t you full and lush? He’s quite the little conquerer himself, isn’t he? I think it’s a good metaphor about empire-building.

Why do men do the things they do? What do men want? Why do they beard?

Slow your questions: A new paper about male primates, published in the journal Evolution and Human Behavior, addresses all of this business. Scientists at the University of Western Australia examined 154 species of primates. They found that males employ more conspicuous “badges” (like facial hair) in large societies with more pressure, where there is more social and physical conflict. In small societies, individuals have time to demonstrate their status and strength. “In large groups where individuals are surrounded by strangers, we need a quick reliable tool to evalu

ate someone’s strength and quality,” said the study’s lead researcher, Dr. Cyril Grueter, “and that’s where these elaborate ornaments come in.”

Grueter argues this accounts for the popularity of beards among British men between 1842 and 1971, during a surge of males in the marriage pool.

Hey, Earl of Southampton, c. 1618! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? Did it for the hussies, did it for the honeys, did it for the courtesans. I don’t know what you call them now, but I think you know whom I am talking about.
Hey, Earl of Southampton, c. 1618! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? Did it for the hussies, did it for the honeys, did it for the courtesans. I don’t know what you call them now, but I think you know whom I am talking about.
Hey, Tatted Tank-Top Enthusiast! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? I did it to assert my masculinity in a competitive environment, in which women seem on the verge of outperforming men.
Hey, Tatted Tank-Top Enthusiast! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
I did it to assert my masculinity in a competitive environment, in which women seem on the verge of outperforming men.
Hey, Charlemagne! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? Oh, I just wasn’t doing much one day and he started taking over my chin, and I thought: My, aren’t you full and lush? He’s quite the little conquerer himself, isn’t he? I think it’s a good metaphor about empire-building.
Hey, Charlemagne! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
Oh, I just wasn’t doing much one day and he started taking over my chin, and I thought: My, aren’t you full and lush? He’s quite the little conquerer himself, isn’t he? I think it’s a good metaphor about empire-building.
Hey, Caveman! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? I have little historical context and no access to razors; please direct your query elsewhere.
Hey, Caveman! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
I have little historical context and no access to razors; please direct your query elsewhere.
Hey, Debussy! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? For women, a series of them, many of whom might be married to other men.
Hey, Debussy! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
For women, a series of them, many of whom might be married to other men.
Hey, Farmers' Market Employee! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? I heard things were tough out here for a gentle fellow. I have no physical skills, but I was able to sit patiently and let a beard grow. It’s really all I have going for me right now.
Hey, Farmers’ Market Employee! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
I heard things were tough out here for a gentle fellow. I have no physical skills, but I was able to sit patiently and let a beard grow. It’s really all I have going for me right now.

 

 

Hey, Viking! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? To assert my virility. I never claimed otherwise … Is that confusing in any way to you?
Hey, Viking! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
To assert my virility. I never claimed otherwise … Is that confusing in any way to you?
Hey, Famed Pirate Edward Teach! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? This is not a beard, but a collection of hirsute daggers. Please check your sources, thank you.
Hey, Famed Pirate Edward Teach! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
This is not a beard, but a collection of hirsute daggers. Please check your sources, thank you.
Hey, George Harrison! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? To match my hair; for the babes; to hide small keepsakes, in that order.
Hey, George Harrison! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
To match my hair; for the babes; to hide small keepsakes, in that order.
Hey, Charles D.! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? Please do not bother me with such foolhardy notions about evolution. I sometimes regret the freewheeling extrapolations of my idea, but I do not regret my beard, which I grew to attract women, of course.
Hey, Charles D.! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
Please do not bother me with such foolhardy notions about evolution. I sometimes regret the freewheeling extrapolations of my idea, but I do not regret my beard, which I grew to attract women, of course.
Hey, Generic Office Worker! Why Did You Grow Your Beard? To remind myself that all is temporary! Now, let me tell you more about this pomade that seems to really soften it, especially at the sides.
Hey, Generic Office Worker! Why Did You Grow Your Beard?
To remind myself that all is temporary! Now, let me tell you more about this pomade that seems to really soften it, especially at the sides.

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