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Old 25th February 2012, 07:23 AM   #3
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 155

The textile which the auction writeup terms "linen" looks much more like burlap to me, given the color, thick fibers, and very coarse weave. If so, that may assist in dating the piece if the piece is assumed to be European, since fairly good estimates could then be made based simply on when burlap came into use in a given area. Burlap comes from the jute plant, which grows in India and that area of the world. The history of its import of burlap to, say England, should be well-documented in the records of the Honourable East India Company if not in many other places. If the material is indeed burlap, then this piece may more likely date from sometime during the 18th C.

I'd think a good deal might also be learned from close examination of one of the metal tacks holding the leather onto the end, since the manufacturing technique used should be traceable to a certain range of dates.
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