By Marie-louise B. Nosch

ISBN-10: 1842172026

ISBN-13: 9781842172025

An figuring out of textiles and the function they performed some time past is necessary for an individual drawn to previous societies. Textiles served and actually nonetheless do as either practical and symbolic goods. The proof for old textiles in Europe is divided rather certainly alongside a north-south divide, with an abundance of exact examples within the north, yet beneficial little within the south, the place oblique proof comes from things like vase portray and frescoes. This quantity brings jointly those faculties to appear in additional aspect at textiles within the historic international, and relies on a convention held in Denmark and Sweden in March 2003. part one, construction and agency takes a chronological glance through greater than 4 thousand years of background; from Syria within the mid-third millennium BC, to 17th Century Germany. part , Crafts and expertise specializes in the connection among the first manufacturer (the craftsman) and the secondary receiver (the archaeologist/conservator). The 3rd part, Society, examines the symbolic nature of textiles, and their position inside historic societal teams. through the publication emphasis is put on the universality of textiles, and the significance of data alternate among students from diverse disciplines.

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There is a definite need for these groups of people, all dealing with textiles but through their own disciplines, to create a common ground for discussion. Thus, the idea of an international conference was conceived. The international conference Ancient Textiles. Production, Crafts and Society took place in Sweden and Denmark in March 2003. Generous funding was received from the European Science Foundation, the Elisabeth Munksgaards Foundation, Denmark, the Institute of Aegean Prehistory, USA, the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, Lund University, Sweden, The Humanistic Research Council, Denmark, and The Swedish Research Council, that enabled 52 textile specialists from 18 different countries to attend the conference.

This makes textile studies awash with fascinating questions and challenges. How do we deal with them? What questions do we ask, and what are our premises? This paper investigates the workings of textile archaeology. Introduction Textiles are a world of their own–and the world needs textiles. Surrounding us everywhere, they are a fundamental part of our material culture, serving a wide range of purposes both functional and symbolic. They provide us with cover against heat or cold, soft furnishings for our comfort, or shields for our privacy.

The result is not a photographic snapshot, more a shorthand essay. Early images of the loom help to make my point. The Bronze Age rock art of the Val Camonica in North Italy shows many recognisable items of equipment from everyday life, especially agriculture. 43 A favourite topic in Classical art was the encounter between Odysseus and the witch Circe when he finds her at her loom according to the Homeric account. 46 The examples which I have just quoted are all well known. But no two modern commentators see them in the same light.

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