Why Week: Why Do Celebrities Walk on Red Carpet at Special Events?

in the video today we're answering a

viewer question because david kaye asks

us why did it roll out the red carpet

for celebrities and dignitaries

throughout history red carpets have LED

luminaries to momentous events both good

and bad

Escalus from 525 BC to 400 55 BC the

father of tragedy wrote various plays

whereas heroes fell from grace due to a

combination of unwinnable circumstances

arrogance and or simply stepping on the

toes of the gods

a few years before his death Aeschylus

wrote Agamemnon in which after a 10-year

absence from his kingdom of Mycenae King

Agamemnon returned home to his wife

triumphant from the Trojan War ins

dragging along his new concubine

Cassandra Clytemnestra was happy to see

Agamemnon but only because she could now

seek her vengeance not only for his new

lady friends but more particularly for

his role in the death of their daughter

a decade previous just before the Greek

fleet had sailed off to fight the Trojan


Agamemnon killed one of the goddess

Artemis 'as deer which enraged her

leading to artemis interfering with the

Greek fleet leaving to a Pisa Agamemnon

was forced to sacrifice his oldest

daughter obviously without his wife's

consent so by the time he arrived back

in Mycenae Clytemnestra was more than

pleased to greet him and determined to

make a show of it she rolled or more

accurately spread out a literal red

carpet marking the first known mention

of such a thing ever happening ordering

her ladies to make a path for Agamemnon

to walk from his chariot to the palace

doors on she stated you women spread out

those tapestries here on the grounds

directly in his path which shall be

covered all in red so justice can lead

him back into his home having already

paid once for earlier hubris Agamemnon

was afraid of further angering the gods

by taking on such as he says don't

invite Envy to cross my path that's how

we honor gods for a mortal man to place

his foot like this on rich embroidery is

not without some risk eventually however

he gave into Clytemnestra is pestering

albeit after first removing his sandals

he walked barefoot on the carpet that

led him to his palace since

to his doom shortly after this little

walk Clytemnestra stabbed him to death

in the bathtub whether it was fear of

the wrath of the gods or lack of

sufficient textiles there are few

episodes recorded of other similar red

carpet uses for the next 2,000 years

although it does seem to have occurred

on occasion now let's fast-forward

significantly through history - one

notable example became in the early

1800s this was when the 5th President of

the United States James Monroe from 1753

- 1831 disembarked from a riverboat in

Georgetown South Carolina and his

welcoming party greeted him with a

ceremonial red carpet again mostly

disappearing into obscurity for a while

the practice was revived in the early

1900s this time by the New York Central

Railroad which rolled out the carpet as

part of its first-class service given on

its 20th century limited train operating

from New York to Chicago from 1938 to

1968 passengers on the twentieth century

limited entered the train after

following a path made by the plush

football field length fibrin sandy red

rug that spans the length of the train

from the engine to the observation car

the height of luxury at the time

overnight passengers of the 20th century

limited left the NYC station at 6 p.m.

and enjoyed cocktails in the observation

car dinner in the dining car with use of

the Hudson River and a comfortable bed

and breakfast on the train before

disembarking the following morning at

8:45 a.m. in Chicago the combination of

luxury and these striking pathways

generally credited as being the

inspiration for the phrase red carpet

treatment co-opting the cachet of the

red carpet sherman and theater magnates

Sid Grauman of the now famous Chinese

Theatre in front of which celebrities

still placed their hands in wet cement

is widely credited with introducing the

practice to Hollywood when he had a red

carpet placed for the stars to follow at

the premiere of Robin Hood at his

Egyptian theater in 1922 also needing a

practical method of guiding his numerous

stars through the throng on Oscar night

the Academy first placed a red carpet to

lead celebrities from their cars to the

Santa Monica Civil Auditorium in 1961 by

1964 realizing the public's interest in

seeing more of Hollywood's best and

brightest Oscar producers began spending

more time on exterior shots of the stars

walking down the carpet nonetheless even

by the early nineteen

sixties the red carpet was still little

more than a trail to be followed this

all changed in the 1970s following

Barbra Streisand's see-through pants

suit best actress acceptance speech in

1969 as celebrities began competing for

the publicity and exposure afforded by

the red carpet by exploring their

fashion sense together with the

introduction of People magazine the

award show red carpet was transformed

into a fashion runway that was as

accessible as the television in your

living room the red carpet evolved again

in the early 1990s when Joan and Melissa

rivers began their coverage of pre award

show fashion beginning with the 1994

golden globes incorporating conversation

and celebrity worship and dishing with

fashion reporting the ear aport is

forever changed the way stars entered

these large events with the simple but

pertinent question who are you wearing

today sporting the 360 degree glam cam

which nearly instantly shows the Stars

outfit from every angle V finger nail

art highlighting mani cam and a cadre of

perky pretty and funny people cooing

cajoling and carving about fashion

modern red carpet events share Bissell

with their ancient ancestor beyond

perhaps at times being a remarkable

display of hubris so I hope you found

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