Silk is a natural protein fiber, some of which can be woven into textiles. The most famous type of silk was obtained from cocoons and larvae of the mulberry silkworm, which was raised in captivity. It has a great look, which is why it is appreciated, which comes from a triangular, prismatic structure that allows the silk fabric to refract light from different angles.
According to Chinese legend, the history of silk began in 2640 BC, in the gardens of the “Yellow Emperor” Juan Dia.
Curious what was destroying the leaves of his mulberry trees, he sent his wife Hi Ling Li to the park. On the branches, she discovered white bugs that spun shiny soft cocoons. And as the story goes, one cocoon accidentally fell into her hot tea and the threads unwound.
She pulled a single long thread from the tea. Silk is “born”!
The attractiveness and popularity of silk throughout history is evidenced by the fact that the main trade route from Asia to Europe was named after it: the “Silk Road”.
Wherever she came, it was no longer possible without her. Silk has become and remains a fabric that, due to its beauty, lightness, shine and specific property, cools in summer and warms in winter, is unique and irreplaceable in every kind of use.
BEETLE IN BYZANTIUM
The monks set out for China around 551. While in China, they observed complex methods for growing silkworms and producing silk. This was crucial for development, because the Byzantines previously thought that silk was made in India.
Since adult silkworms are quite fragile and must be kept at an ideal temperature constantly, in order not to perish, they used their contacts to smuggle the eggs of silkworms or very young larvae, which they hid in their bamboo sticks. The mulberry bushes that were needed to feed the beetles were most likely brought by monks or by the Byzantines themselves. It is estimated that the entire expedition lasted two years.
Shortly after the expedition, silk factories were established in Constantinople, Beirut, Antioch, Tire and Thebes. Byzantium established its own, while breaking Chinese and Persian monopolies. Silk clothing, especially that which was dyed in the imperial purple color, was almost always reserved for the elite in Byzantium, and its wearing was codified by law. Silk production in the region around Constantinople, especially in Thrace in northern Greece, has continued to this day.
FEATURES OF SILK
Silk as a textile fiber has very good and healthy qualities.
It is very pleasant for the skin, separates heat or excess moisture, has a very high tensile hardness (in the same dimensions it is stronger than steel, it is used in supersonic planes, rubber in professional cycling, etc.).
They have great elasticity (about 20-25%), pure silk is difficult to ignite, it is an insulator and a healthy material because it is anti-allergic.
Silk bedding deters microorganisms.