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... and I mean for textiles, not consumption, you loons! E EM<br>
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I have an opportunity to work with a wholesaler to acquire a great deal of quality hemp fabric in various weights and weaves, but I was wondering to what extent the Romans actually used hemp.<br>
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I do recall reading a reference that stated hemp was a mainstay of Roman ropemaking, etc. but if anyone can advise on the actual prevalence of the stuff and its most typical uses, I would appreciate it -- lest I spend $$$ on hemp textiles by mistake thinking I can use in my Roman recreations.<br>
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Cheers,<br>
Jenny <p></p><i></i>
Hopefully my legion didn't pick up too many nasty habits in acquirring their name, otherwise you could have an extra legitimate reenactment use for the stuff <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Ave, Imperatrix!<br>
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According to Verla Birrel in <i> The Textile Arts</i>, the Romans used hemp pretty commonly because even though it wasn't as easy to work with as wool, it was easier to come by.<br>
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John Hanson in the July 1998 issue of <i> The Ecologist</i> writes in his article "Pliny's Laughing Leaf": "As the 1980 Hempathy edition of The Ecologist outlined, 'common hemp, 'true hemp culture was as indispensable to the Roman Empire, among a great many other peoples, for medicine, food, clothing, shelter and communication, as it was to any peasant, his family, or self-supporting community that possessed the soils and skills to grow it. This was so from the beginning of civilization down to our own misbegotten industrial era, plagued by its current ethos of unsustainable expansion.<br>
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Hemp has been used in a great many ways for centuries for everything from food to clothing. Indeed, Herodotus, Homer, Ovid, Pliny, Virgil, Livy, Martial, Gallien and many others all commented on the diversity of uses in which hemp was employed.(FN3) As our 1980 issue showed, there is good reason why hemp was so popular -- both in terms of resource conservation and for, among other things, its quality. The paper you will find at the heart of this issue, in the Campaigns and News section, will by all accounts, remain intact a great many decades longer than will the paper on which this editorial is printed. What's more, neither the slaughter of trees nor treatment by so many toxic chemicals has contributed to its quality."<br>
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I've also read about "Roman Cement" used in the aquaduct. The recipe uses hemp hurds mixed with sand and lime as well as other reeds. Apparently the Hurds contain approximately<br>
20% silica content, the lime creates a chemical reaction that bonds the sand and fiber together.<br>
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Finally, in Josef Bednarczek's <i> Everyday Life in the Roman Empire</i>: "A particularly valuable discovery relating to the manufacture of textiles was made at Karczyn. At the edge of this second/third-century ad settlement, a facility (unique on a European scale) comprising equipment used in the initial stages of preparing linen and hemp was found situated within a shallow body of water. Here a series of large wooden vats had been dug into the ground, well below the water table. Bundles of linen or hemp were stacked inside them in layers and left to soak for several days in order to separate the fibres from their tough stems. The last, excellently preserved, bundles lying at the bottom of these vats were recovered during the course of excavation 1700 years later! This was the first time that archaeologists were able to record this initial stage of plant fibre processing; the sum of previous knowledge on this subject having stemmed from indirect evidence in the form of much later ethnographic analogies and written sources." <p><BR><p align=center><font color=gold><font size=3>
_________________________________<BR>
CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR> <font color=gold> <font size=3>
_________________________________</font></font></p><i></i>
Why Casca would know so much about hemp is beyond me. Perhaps it explains many things<br>
<br>
Hibernicus<br>
LEG IX HSPA <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Yeah...it sure would. I just wish I had that to blame it on, Centurio. <p><BR><p align=center><font color=gold><font size=3>
_________________________________<BR>
CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR> <font color=gold> <font size=3>
_________________________________</font></font></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/ucascatarquinius.showPublicProfile?language=EN>Casca Tarquinius</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="http://www.cartoonnetwork.com/shop/img/nav/block.char.jbv.roll.gif" BORDER=0> at: 1/16/02 10:55:15 pm<br></i>
Great, thanks, Casca -- your sources are your own... E EM<br>
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Did the Romans wear a lot of hemp clothing?<br>
<br>
J. <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Yes. From what I can gather of my meagre knowledge of ancient textiles, hemp was rather common for making clothing because it was cheap, easy to use, and very plentiful.<br>
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From my days as a drug hunter/killer in Panama, I remember the marijuana family is very difficult to kill off as far as plants go. They're about the hardiest plants you can grow, so it stands to reason that even the blackest-thumbed plebeians could grow it.<br>
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If you want to go authentic, you can dye it with any brown, black, or green tea, ginger, cinnamon...pretty much anything that will turn water a different color will make stain your cloth.<br>
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Certainly if you want to go high-class in your character's persona (Is that redundant?!), you can use more exotic [root] dye. Greens and browns will be most common amongst the middle class while white, pale (eggshell) blue, and some subtle golds and greens can be found in some ancient central and eastern European settlements dating from Roman times.<br>
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If I were you, I would definitely use hemp if you can find. It's a lot more rugged than wool and a lot less itchy. <p><BR><p align=center><font color=gold><font size=3>
_________________________________<BR>
CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR> <font color=gold> <font size=3>
_________________________________</font></font></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Among the artifacts recovered from the punic galley at Marsala was a small basket containing remnants of cannabis. It was probably used as medecine.<br>
No rolling paper was found, though...<br>
Sorry... DE EM <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

I'm not convinced Romans wore hemp clothes. Try harder.<br>
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Sure it makes great rope. Your idea of mixing hemp in concrete is intriguing but is there clear evidence it was used for clothes? <p></p><i></i>

Anonymous

Yes, in Bednarczek's <i> Everyday Life in the Roman Empire</i>. I thought I was clear about that. <p><BR><p align=center><font color=gold><font size=3>
_________________________________<BR>
CASCA TARQVINIVS GEMINVS<BR>
<a href=http://www.legio-ix-hispana.org> LEG IX HSPA COH V CEN VIII CON III </font></font><BR> <font color=gold> <font size=3>
_________________________________</font></font></p><i>Edited by: <A HREF=http://pub45.ezboard.com/ucascatarquinius.showPublicProfile?language=EN>Casca Tarquinius</A> <IMG HEIGHT=10 WIDTH=10 SRC="http://www.cartoonnetwork.com/shop/img/nav/block.char.jbv.roll.gif" BORDER=0> at: 1/28/02 10:25:42 pm<br></i>
Sounds really interesting. I have no idea what hemp cloth looks like, but natural would be our color, whatever that is, in Legio XX. Of course, I dont' know what Matt thinks of hemp cloth, but it would be an interesting addition to linen and wool for the events! I'd like a few yards for a tunic at least. Where did you find it Jen? <p>Aulus, Legio XX.
the HIGH NOISE/low signal person for RAT.
ICQ 940236
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Oh, just did some web searches for hemp fabric. The supplier's going to send some swatches in various weights and weaves. I'll let you know.<br>
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Cheers,<br>
Jenny <p></p><i></i>