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Fabrics Broadcloth
In the Middle Ages broadcloths were so-called to distinguish them from single widths or 'streits' of one yard wide. By the nineteenth century the term was used more to define quality than width, though 54 inches was still the norm. Traditionally, broadcloth has been made from pure wool of high quality, plain in colour and weave and used for men's clothing. In modern times there is also a cotton broadcloth, made in plain and patterned material and used for the garments of both sexes. There is also a broadsilk which describes silk made in broader widths than usual. Brocaded Material A rich fabric woven with raised figures, originally in gold and silver thread (Italian brocca=boss); also a cloth of gold and silver, made in India. The European fabric was of silk, interwoven with the gold and silver threads. ]Later, the word applied to any flowered material with a raised pattern. In the eighteenth century the figuration was woven in coloured silks, raised on an extra weft (see also Weaving, Jacquard).

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2006 March 28