By Roger Gilman and Jane Bowler Gilman
Art and Archeology, Vol. 13 (1922)
Introduction: Silks and spices – the magic of the East is in the words, for these two products were more sought after than any other goods of the caravan trade. Silk in all probability originated in China but was known all over Asia long before it was introduced into Europe. We know that it was worn by one of Alexander’s generals and there is mention made of it by Aristotle, but the monopoly held in the Orient until Justinian established the silk weaving industry in Byzantium in the 6th century.