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Weaving in Bronze Age Italy: the Case of the Terramare settlement at Montale

Chapter in book
Authors Serena Sabatini
Published in The Textile Revolution in Bronze Age Europe / edited by Serena Sabatini, Sophie Bergerbrant.
Pages 39-79
ISBN 978-1-108-49359-8
Publisher Cambridge University Press
Place of publication Cambridge
Publication year 2020
Published at Department of Historical Studies
Pages 39-79
Language en
Links https://doi.org/10.1017/97811086564...
Keywords Loom weights, community of practice, specialization, knowledge, technology
Subject categories Archaeology, History of Technology, History and Archaeology

Abstract

The spread of textile tools in the Bronze Age settlements of the Po plain has hinted at the general existence of local textile production; however, the issue has not been investigated in depth at every site nor from a social, economic and cultural point of view. A thorough study of the archaeological evidence from Montale suggests that at specific locations textile manufacture could have been close to industrial-scale and focused on specific kinds of production. While there is an overwhelming prevalence of spinning tools, loom weights were also found at Montale and are here examined. Since most of the material included in the study was recovered during the 1800s and completely lacks contextual information, its interpretation is attempted on a typological and comparative basis. Adopting a community of practice model as a frame of reference, it is argued that not only were a variety of weaving methods carried out and developed at Montale, but also that one might reasonably envision specialisation within the northern Italian local and regional patterns of weaving.

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