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The evolution of silk production structure

Update:16 Mar 2018

In the distant ancient times, China had already formed […]

In the distant ancient times, China had already formed an organization for silk production. Since ancient times, the text was not yet developed, and few records of social activities were recorded in the literature. Therefore, social activities during this period were mainly found through archaeological discoveries and proper adoption of legends. According to legend, from the Xia Dynasty onwards, textiles had become a trading item, a central town with a well-developed textile industry had emerged, and a professional clan that used textile production as its industry. At the latest in the Zhou Dynasty, there were government-run hand-made textile workshops, and the internal workforce has become increasingly detailed. The saplings for mulberry, silkworm and cocoon in the Zhou Dynasty have reached a very high level, and bundled wire has become a standardized circulation item.

In the Shang Dynasty relics, silk fabrics with a geometric pattern and strong silk thread have been found; the relics of the Zhou Dynasty have already been jacquard patterns; spring and autumn silk fabrics of the Warring States period have been found to have pupa, yarn, spun, silk, silk, silk, silk, and silk. Dai, Jin, etc., and some also add embroidery. Color wool fabrics were unearthed in Nomon of Qinghai and many parts of Xinjiang, and they were no later than the early Western Zhou Dynasty.

Among these textile products, Jin He embroidery has been very beautiful. So Jin Jinxiu became an adjective for good things. From the Xia Dynasty to the Spring and Autumn and the Warring States period, textile production had great development both in terms of quantity and quality. The quality of raw materials has been further improved; textile tools have evolved over the long term to become original hand-operated textile machines such as brakes, spinning wheels, and looms. Labor productivity has increased substantially. Some textile producers have gradually become specialized. As a result, their craftsmanship has become increasingly sophisticated, and the craftwork, spinning, weaving, and dyeing techniques have gradually become complementary. Textiles become a large number of trading items, and sometimes even become the medium of exchange, playing the role of currency. Product specifications have gradually gone from rough to detailed standards. In the Shang and Zhou dynasties, silk weaving technology developed prominently. In the Spring and Autumn and the Warring States period, the silk fabrics are very beautiful. Variety of textures and rich colors make silk fabrics a well-known noble material. This is the stage from the bud to the formation of manual machine spinning.

We do not know much about the situation of the Shang Dynasty silk production organization, but we learned from ancient books that there was a bureaucrat known as the “Hundreds of Deacons” at that time and led the work slaves to engage in handicraft production including silk weaving.

 The situation of the silk production organization in Zhou Dynasty is very clear. "Zhou Li" is a book that records the official system of the Zhou Dynasty. Among the bureaucrats involved in the production of silk, there are many people who are officials who are in charge of the work of women in the palace. They are responsible for teaching the techniques of weaving silk in palaces of the palace. , and is responsible for handling assignments, inspections, rewards and penalties and so on.