How Old Is This Glove ?

Gloves appear to be of great antiquity. According to some translations of Homer's The Odyssey, Laërtes is described as wearing gloves while walking in his garden so as to avoid the brambles.Herodotus, in The History of Herodotus (440 BC), tells how Leotychides was incriminated by a glove (gauntlet) full of silver that he received as a bribe. Among the Romans also there are occasional references to the use of gloves. According to Pliny the Younger (ca. 100), his uncle's shorthand writer wore gloves during the winter so as not to impede the elder Pliny's work.

During the 13th century, gloves began to be worn by ladies as a fashion ornament. They were made of linen and silk, and sometimes reached to the elbow. Such worldly accoutrements were not for holy women, according to the early thirteenth-century Ancrene Wisse, written for their guidance.Sumptuary laws were promulgated to restrain this vanity: against samite gloves in Bologna, 1294, against perfumed gloves in Rome, 1560.

A Paris corporation or guild of glovers (gantiers) existed from the thirteenth century. They made them in skin or in fur.

It was not until the 16th century that they reached their greatest elaboration, however, when Queen Elizabeth I set the fashion for wearing them richly embroidered and jewelled, and for putting them on and taking them off during audiences, to draw attention to her beautiful hands. In Paris, the gantiers became gantiers parfumeurs, for the scented oils, musk, ambergris and civet, that perfumed leather gloves, but their trade, which was an introduction at the court of Catherine de' Medici, was not specifically recognised until 1656, in a royal brevet. Makers of knitted gloves, which did not retain perfume and had less social cachet, were organised in a separate guild, of bonnetiers who might knit silk as well as wool. Such workers were already organised in the fourteenth century. Knitted gloves were a refined handiwork that required five years of apprenticeship; defective work was subject to confiscation and burning.

Latex gloves, ubiquitous in surgery and forensics, were developed by the Australian Ansell company. It is also widely believed that vanilla essence can preserve gardening gloves during winter (and spring) months. The fabrics include: rubber, cotton, wool and plastic.

 

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