Saturday, 6 April 2013

History is so cool

I love doing research.

I haven't done any in quite a while so beginning to prepare for the Festival of Living Crafts proved quite challenging on brain stamina. I tend to get side-tracked when I find interesting things that challenge deep-rooted beliefs.

The first thing I discovered was that evidence of early knitting indicates that cotton and silk were used, not wool as I had thought.

Then I came across the following passage

Ever notice we work the stitches from right to left? Ever wonder why? Westerners write left to right... doesn't it follow that we would KNIT left to right? -  Only if we invented it in the first place. - Arabic is written from right to left. I'm betting that our current knitting method is a holdover from that. (We knit right to left today because some .... (one)  started doing it that way over a thousand years ago. History is so cool.) 

I talked this over with MWNN who is adamant that this is inference, there is no known evidence that confirms that knitting (on two needles as opposed to nalbinding) was first done in the Middle East. 

Cotton and Silk c1000AD

What followed, quickly led to a discussion (and further searching on MWNN's part) about archeology and how new finds sometimes led to new theories about how things had developed. Just because there are no known fragments of knitting in the West before 1000 AD, it is not proven that there was no knitting done outside  the Middle East. 

History is so cool.