When was wool discovered?

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2011-01-06 03:09:11

There are mentions of wool in Genesis, so there is no definitive

date for this product. The first mentions of wool are probably in

Sumerian cuneform where it was a commodity. Since those tablets are

over 4,000 years old, it's a good bet that we cannot find a proper


An interesting sidenote...when the English "discovered" Egypt,

they found the Vegetable Lamb of Tartary. What they found was

cotton, but they could not conceive of a plant that produced

wearable material. Wool was THE material of clothing, so the legend

of the vegetable Lamb was born.

"On_the_lighter_side." id="On_the_lighter_side.">On the lighter


When Ogg the Cold figured out that he didn't need to wear the

whole sheep skin, just the fuzz.

In the misty dawn of time, Ogg had been wearing the whole sheep

skin, but other than keeping his skin baby smooth, he wasn't really

impressed with wearing a skin other than his own. After all it was

heavy, smelled very bad and was rather short! Ogg was not an

especially tall man, but the sheep skin was rather less than

adequate for total coverage. Ogg did like the warmth and light

weight of the fluff on the other side of the skin, but the problem

of the length had to be solved.

One day he noticed that the fuzz of the skin came out of the

sheepskin fairly easily and it was rather stretchy. He gathered the

fuzz off the skin and pulled it apart and discovered that it would

twist together without making a knot in the end. This was an

interesting development, so he spent the afternoon twisting the

bits of the stretchy fiber together. At the end of the experiment,

he had a long, looong piece of wool string. Now this was a fun

thing to have but of no apparent use at the moment. Gathering his

string together, he headed back to camp.

Unfortunately on the way, he waded through a stream and while

trying to keep his balance, he dropped all his nice new string in

the stream. While he retrieved the wool, it was a wet and dripping

mess. Sighing, he squeezed out some of the water and brought the

sodden mass back to the tribal clearing.

Dropping the mess on a used skin by the fire, he explained to

his mate, the intrepid Rhonda that he had been experimenting again.

Rhonda looked at his skimpier than usual sheep skin and sighed.

While the animals did make good eating, the skins were

supposed to be fluffy and Ogg's sheepskin was rather lighter

than normal. But Ogg generally had good ideas, so she studied the

wet mess on the used skin.

It was then that Rhonda had the bright idea to dry out the mess

on the yron rock which she had just taken from the fire. Ogg could

then have his string to play with, and she could wander the

countryside looking for new land features. She slapped the wet wool

on the yron and vigorously started pounding another rock on top of

the wool to press the water out of it. Steam started to rise from

the mass and Rhonda was very satisfied with her initiative.

But a very strange thing started to happen. The mass, while

steaming, started to glob together and the more that Rhonda

pounded, the firmer the mass became. In a very few minutes, the

wool string was indistinguishable as string, and there was a very

solid piece of something on the yron! Giving it up as a bad

job and waste of time, Rhonda threw the thing off to the side of

the clearing in disgust. They went off to sleep without a second

thought to the strange mess on the side of the fire. The strange

mass landed on a pile of rocks and continued to cool and dry.

The next morning, Ogg leisurely lifted the flat piece of messed

up wool and to his surprise, it was strong, tough, and very light.

Ogg had the bright idea of putting it on his head as it was rather

circular and to his surprise, it kept the sun off his head and out

of his eyes! This was a momentous discovery! His friend Gronk had

eye problems, and this new discovery would help with the problem of

squinting to see.

So thus was born the felted fedora, and a whole new enterprise

sprang up. The men (for a change) demanded this strong light head

covering and were willing to trade for them.

Rhonda looked at the head covering with amusement, but then an

idea slowly began to percolate up through her consciousness. If

this thing was so easy to make, just being a matter of smacking the

wet fuzz with a rock, how big could the thing be made? She went out

after breakfast (grape juice and yeggs) and found one of the short

plump animals to irritate. Gathering a very large quantity of the

wool off the surrounding bushes and from the animals themselves,

she sauntered back to camp to experiment for herself.

Remembering the technique that was used the night before, she

carefully heated an yron rock and wet the wool in a pot of beetroot

boiling near the fire. But this time she spread the wool over a

fairly large piece of flat wood and started pounding the wool with

the yron (thereby inventing the process which would later be known

as "ironing"...a curse which would not be aleviated until the 20th

century.) This resulted in a large piece of fairly flat, damp red

wool felt that could be cut! Congratulating herself for an

independent invention, she patiently waited for the wool to cool

and dry. And the next day, she threaded some strips of hide through

holes in now dry wool felt and thereby cured the problem of Ogg's

short (and now rather naked) sheep skin. Tailored clothing had been

invented. Ogg now had a crude extension under his sheep skin, and

the new red shorts didn't impede his walking. Plus the hide strings

were adjustable so that he didn't soil them when he needed to

relieve himself.

Together Rhonda and Ogg had become the first fashion designers

in history. They celebrated with the tribe by hosting a barbecue of

a fairly well plucked sheep. This day in history, the 8th day of

the month of Graf, was officially declared "fashion day". That is

the day that wool was invented. So even now we remember that day

with graphic designs of "new" clothing and I even suspect that

fashion week began as part of that anniversary, although the link

has not been thoroughly investigated.

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