Textile Production and Consumption in the Ancient Near East: archaeology, epigraphy, iconography [Hardback]

Marie-Louise Nosch (Editor); Henriette Koefoed (Editor); Eva Andersson Strand (Editor)

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ISBN: 9781842174890 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Series: Ancient Textiles Series | Volume: 12 | Year of Publication: 2013 | Language: English 200p, 8 colour & 82 b/w illustrations

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Textile Production and Consumption in the Ancient Near East


In the past, textile production was a key part of all ancient societies. The Ancient Near East stands out in this respect with the overwhelming amount of documentation both in terms of raw materials, line of production, and the distribution of finished products. The thirteen intriguing chapters in Textile Production and Consumption in the Ancient Near East describe the developments and changes from household to standardised, industrialised and centralised productions which take place in the region. They discuss the economic, social and cultural impact of textiles on ancient society through the application of textile tool studies, experimental testing, context studies and epigraphical as well as iconographical sources. Together they demonstrate that the textile industries, production, technology, consumption and innovations are crucial to, and therefore provide an in-depth view of ancient societies during this period. Geographically the contributions cover Anatolia, the Levant, Syria, the Assyrian heartland, Sumer, and Egypt.

Table of Contents

Introduction (Henriette Koefoed, Eva Andersson Strand, Marie-Louise Nosch)

1. Functions and Uses of Textiles in the Ancient Near East Summary and Perspectives (Catherine Breniquet)
2. The Emergence of the Ghassulian Textile Industry in the Southern Levant, Chalcolithic Period (c. 4500-4000 BCE) (Janet Levy & Isaac Gilead)
3. Textile Production in Palatial and Non-Palatial Contexts: the Case of Tel Kabri (Nurith Goshen & Assaf Yasur-Landau & Eric H. Cline)
4. Textiles, Value, and the Early Economies of North Syria and Anatolia (David R. A. Lumb)
5. Technology and Palace Economy in Middle Bronze Age Anatolia: the Case of the Crescent Shaped Loom Weight (Agnete Wisti Lassen)
6. Her Share of the Profits: Women, Agency, and Textile Production a Kültepe/Kanesh in the Early Second Millennium BC (Allison Karmel Thomason)
7. Visualising Ancient Textiles – how to make a Textile visible on the Basis of an Interpretation of an Ur III Text (Eva Andersson Strand & Maria Cybulska)
8. The Costumes of Inanna/Ishtar (Bernice Jones)
9. Considering the Finishing of Textiles based on Neo-Sumerian Inscriptions from Girsu (Richard Firth)
10. Tapestries in the Bronze and Early Iron Ages of the Ancient Near East (Joanna S. Smith)
11. Spinning from old Threads: The Whorls from Ugarit (Caroline Sauvage)
12. Throwing the Baby Out with the Bathwater: Innovations in Mediterranean Textile Production at the End of the 2nd/Beginning of the 1st Millennium BCE (Laura B. Mazow)
13. Textile Production and Consumption in the Neo-Assyrian Empire (Salvatore Gaspa)

Reviews & Quotes

"Indeed, there is a great deal that is of interest in this book, and overall, one is struck by how sophisticated the study of textiles and textile production in the ancient Near East has become. If I could urge a long-term goal upon its practitioners, it would be to move beyond their specialized analyses in order to render their sophisticated understanding in a comprehensive and synthetic presentation."

"Scholars and students working in any of these areas will undoubtedly find material of great interest."
D.T. Potts
Ancient West & East (02/01/2018)

"Each study provides increased clarity to the complex understanding of the meanings behind textiles and the roles that they played in ancient societies. "
Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and H
Journal of Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology and Heritage Studies (19/03/2014)

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