An archaeologist friend of mine visited Hallstatt to see the remains
of a woven Iron Age textile wrapped around a tool used by a salt miner.
I believe there is an early record of the weft and warp pattern. She
decided to dye some wool with the colors indicated, and follow the
recorded pattern on her loom. The end result turned out to be a green
and black tartan pattern which was not clear from the remains! She gave
me a piece and I have it framed.
Another friend of mine, (of a much earlier date that I shared
quarters with while working in Germany, later wrote a book on crocheting
, I believe in the 1950's, but I can't think of her name - I think it was
Nicky for her last name Nichols, but I can't be sure...I'll try and
recall unless someone else knows more about crocheting and is familiar
with the book.
Whether there are early examples in that book I can't recall.
Don't know how helpful this is but I thought you might like to hear
these stories :)
>In a message dated 09/09/2006 09:37:31 GMT Standard Time,
>[log in to unmask]
>I have recently resumed a hobby of crochet and have been
>wondering just how old this craft is. It also makes me think about
>knitting, knotting and sprang.
>The textiles from Tybrind Vig (mesolithic) are interesting. And there
>are similar textile finds from Northern Germany, I believe. These are
>not woven but appear to be plant fibre, somehow knotted.
>Any thoughts about this out there on the list?
>My understanding is that crochet is a comparatively recent craft - I seem
>remember that the earliest examples of "nun's work" (crochet lace) are from
>seventeenth century Italy, but I may be wrong on this. I think pillow lace
>developed a little earlier and that most earlier lace was needle-lace but
>The finds of bone needles from the Palaeolithic suggests that textile craft
>of some kind (preparation of yarn and cordage, sewing?) must have been going
>on then, and evrything else follows from then.
> As a general rule the crafts that use yarn working with a bight from a
>continuous supply like crochet and knitting (Tenth century Egypt - I
>later in development than those that use an end like naalebinding and
>netting/knotting. These latter are extremely ancient and weaving is
>probably not far
>behind! Weaving is likely to have been a descendant of plaiting and the
>more elaborate form of plaiting, sprang, may well also have preceded or
>developed along with weaving. Sprang in Europe goes back to the Iron Age
>Tablet-weaving MAY be very ancient with its roots in Egypt, but the proven
>evidence for it only goes back to Roman contexts.
>Hope these ramblings help