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Clothing                  2,000 BC
Africa
Southwest Asia
Egypt
Indus Valley
China
Europe
South America
Mesoamerica
North America
Other

Africa

 

Southwest Asia

 

Egypt

 

Indus Valley

 

China

The Takla Makan Desert had preserved not only the fine parchment and palm leaves with their Tocharian writings but also corpses of the former inhabitants of the region in which the language was spoken. These people are far more ancient than the manuscripts. A naturally mummified woman, her desiccated flesh in an incredible state of preservation, was exhumed from the desert floor of the Tarim Basin by a crew of Chinese archaeologists in 1985. The mummy was dressed in a colorful blouse, skirt, leggings, boots, hat, and jewelry. She is estimated to have been fifty-eight years old and to I have lived at least a thousand years before Christ. What most surprised her discoverers was her almost six-foot height, her long, narrow nose, her thin lips, her deep-set eyes, her blond hair, and her pointed skull, all unmistakable features of a European pedigree. Some graves contained woven plaid textiles. The diagonal twill weave requires a type of loom never before linked with central Asia. A specialist in textile archaeology at the University of Pennsylvania remarked that the wool design was "virtually identical stylistically and technically" to plaids found in Germany and Austria from roughly the same time. (131)

Europe

Greek wolf-warriors (left and above). Wolf-clans, jaguar-clans, eagle-clans...it had taken me a while to get used to thinking of the Mediterranean peoples dancing around offering victims to the gods dressed in animal skins, but they did, and I'd finally gotten past the misconceptions of my "classical" education. (120)

 

 

 

South America

 The domestication of cotton between about 4000 BC and 1200 BC provided a relatively cheap source of textiles, and cotton textiles were complemented by a highly developed weaving craft in which reeds and other grasses were woven into sandals, clothes, and many other products. Using mineral and plant-derived dyes, ancient Andeans decorated many of their textiles with a wide variety of motifs, including geometric figures and stylized people and animals. (52)

Mesoamerica

 

North America

 Between 9,000 and 2,500 years ago Desert West cultures worked out a marvelous array of subsistence technologies and strategies, and the aridity of the environment has preserved artifacts so well that we can reconstruct their way of life in considerable detail. Scraps of fur clothing have been found, as well as moccasins and woven sandals.(26)

Other