historic textiles from Karanis
texts about textiles
Texts from Karanis
Highlighted Texts
Cloth Goods

Highlighted Texts

1. Private Letter
P. Mich. Inv. 5638, item 1
Karanis, 29-132*-DI

In this letter, written in Greek, Rullius asks Apollinarius to send white cotton items from Rome. It is not clear what these items are. The letter may be dated to the 2nd century A.D.

...Send the white cottons, as I requested of you when I was with you, to Menon. If there are soft ones, he said when he was with you, let them be sent from Rome. I will deliver them if you wish to send them

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2. Receipt for Garments
P. Mich. Inv. 1050
Origin unknown

This receipt lists garments and various other cloth items to be given to Theodosios in Zenon’s name. This receipt was written in Greek in the 5th or 6th century A.D.

A linen variegated tunic, 1, one;
cloaks made in the Antiochian style, 5, in total, five;
similarly, an Antioch hood, 1, in total, one;
combed linen variegated tunic, 1, in total, one;
wrapping cloths, 3, three;
a shirt and a cloak;
a light green upper garment, 1, one;
embroidered panels, 4, in total, four;
a fine linen cloth, 1 in total, one

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3. Private Letter
P. Mich. Inv. 5389
Karanis, 28-B167D2-A

In this letter, Claudius Terentianus describes for his father some items that his mother wants. The letter is written in Latin and addressed in Greek.

Claudius Terentianus to Claudius Tiberianus, his father, very many greetings.

My mother salutes you and asks you to buy for her, if it can be done, some merchandise ... a linen garment and ... mattresses that I brought for her buy them at a reasonable price, I beg you, so that you may satisfy her ...

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4. Private Letter
P. Mich. Inv. 5391
Karanis, 28-B167D2-C

This letter from Claudius Terentianus to his father acknowledges receipt of certain articles of clothing (apparently not the items he asked for) and requests military equipment and more clothing.

Claudius Terentianus to Claudius Tiberianus, his lord and dearest father, very many greetings.

Know, father, that I have received ... a cloak, a tunic, and the girdled clothes, and from Nepotianus ... But you gave him rough ones

I ask and beg you, father, for I have no one dear to me except you, after the gods, to send to me by Valerius a battle sword, ... a pickaxe, a grappling iron, two of the best lances obtainable, a cloak of beaver skin, and a girdled tunic, together with my trousers, so that I may have them, since I wore out my tunic before I entered the service and my trousers were laid away new. And if you are going to send anything, put an address on everything and describe the distinguishing features to me by letter lest any exchange be made en route

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5. Private Letter
P. Mich. Inv. 1363
Perhaps from Philadelphia in Egypt

In this letter, Heliodora complains to her mother about her daughter’s theft of clothes, jewelry, and money. The letter was written in Greek in the late 3rd century A.D.

Heliodora to my mother, many greetings.

Many troubles have been inflicted upon me by my daughterShe stripped me of everything and took away my gold ornaments and my earrings and gave me ... a used tunic ...

Do not send any sackcloth. What I have here is enough for me

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