Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition

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(473 words)

, Arabic word denoting both flax and linen.

The Arabs already knew and esteemed linen fabrics in pre-Islamic times. In this early period these were usually called ḳubāṭī , i.e. Coptic stuff, since they were imported from Egypt. Until the later Middle Ages Egypt remained famous for its flax and its linen fabrics. The Geniza documents, which mainly date from the 5th/11th century, contain copious documentation on the flax trade. From these documents it appears that flax was mainly grown in Upper Egypt. There were many kinds of…

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Ashtor, E., “Kattān”, in: Encyclopaedia of Islam, Second Edition, Edited by: P. Bearman, Th. Bianquis, C.E. Bosworth, E. van Donzel, W.P. Heinrichs. Consulted online on 27 January 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1573-3912_islam_SIM_4030>
First published online: 2012
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004161214, 1960-2007

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