Manufactured Textile Fibers

  • Bhupender S. Gupta


The first conversion of naturally occurring fibers into threads strong enough to be looped into snares, knitted to form nets, or woven into fabrics is lost in prehistory. Unlike stone weapons, such threads, cords, and fabrics—being organic in nature—have in most part disappeared, although in some dry caves traces remain. There is ample evidence to indicate that spindles used to assist in the twisting of fibers together had been developed long before the dawn of recorded history. In that spinning process, fibers such as wool were drawn out of a loose mass, perhaps held in a distaff, and made parallel by human fingers. (A maidservant so spins in Giotto’s The Annunciation to Anne, ca. A.D. 1306, Arena Chapel, Padua, Italy.1 A rod (spindle), hooked to the lengthening thread, was rotated so that the fibers while so held were twisted together to form additional thread. The finished length then was wound by hand around the spindle, which, in becoming the core on which the finished product was accumulated, served the dual role of twisting and storing, and, in so doing, established a principle still in use today. (Even now, a “spindle” is 14,400 yards of coarse linen thread.) Thus, the formation of any threadlike structure became known as spinning, and it followed that a spider spins a web, a silkworm spins a cocoon, and manufactured fibers are spun by extrusion, although no rotation is involved.


Cellulose Acetate Industrial Chemistry Adipic Acid Aramid Fiber Molten Polymer 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bhupender S. Gupta
    • 1
  1. 1.College of TextilesNorth Carolina State UniversityUSA

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