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by Archaeology Newsroom

Basketry and matting. Grafted by the past onto the present

Evidence of the existence and apllication of basketry and matting crafts come down to us from the Neolithic Age and not earlier than 10.000 BC. However, proof of the use of products made with the twining technique exist even earlier, when Neolithic man stopped using pot-like objects found in nature, like coconuts and shells. These were employed for the transportation of equipments and tools during the endless wanderings dictated by nomadic life. The archaeological research of Neolithic and Bronze Age sites both in the East and West brought to us a great number of identical baskets and mats — which have been preserved until today thanks to the favourable environmental conditions — mat impressions on house floors and on the bases of various pottery items as well as pottery casts of basketry. The thorough study of these finds led to the identification of the material and technique used for making baskets and mats as well as to a significant conclusion: that the crafts of basketry and matting as regards their material and technique have remained unchanged throughout the centuries, despite the triumph of mechanization and the technological evolution of our time.