Brill’s Encyclopedia of China

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(957 words)

True Chinese silk (cansi) consists of the semi-transparent double thread of fibroin which is produced by the caterpillar of the mulberry silkworm (Bombyx mori L. (sericaria)) through gland secretion and enclosed by silken glue (sericin). The mulberry silkworm moth belongs to the family of Bombycidae in the class of the nocturnal butterfly (Lepidoptera nocturno). Its caterpillars are fed exclusively with leaves from the white mulberry tree (Morus alba). In addition, there is also tussah silk, which is produced by silkworms living in the wild, for example by oak silkworms (Antheraea p…

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Kuhn, Dieter, “Silk”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of China, Managing Editor English Edition: Daniel Leese. Consulted online on 01 December 2022 <>
First published online: 2008
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004168633, 20121018

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