Some exciting news for those of us who enjoy spinning yarns by hand!
First study into spinning
A University of Hertfordshire historian has received a European Union grant to conduct the first ever study into spinning before the Industrial Revolution. It starts next week.
Four hundred years of spinning
The grant for €823,150 has been awarded by the European Research Council so that Professor John Styles at the University’s Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities Research Institute can undertake a five-year research project into Spinning in the Era of the Spinning Wheel, 1400-1800, which begins on 1 June 2010.
Undertaken by ordinary women
“When people today think about spinning wheels, they usually think of Sleeping Beauty, a fairytale princess, pricking her finger. In fact, working by hand at a spinning wheel was what most ordinary women in England did for the 400 years before the Industrial Revolution,” said Professor Styles. “This was a skilled occupation, vital to the success of the textile industries that made England rich. Yet historians often dismiss hand spinning as part-time, unskilled work for ignorant country women. They treat it as an inefficient obstacle to increased productivity, ripe for replacement by the mechanical inventions of the Industrial Revolution.”
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