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Poster: "Ed Hopkins" <Ed.Hopkins@MCI.Com>
> I have recently obtained a bag of Llama hair/wool from a friend (which
> could become a continuous free source if I were interested). If I make
> something from this, it might be really cool if I could document it. I
> was wondering if anyone has stumbled upon period, EUROPEAN accounts of
> Llamas and/or stuff made from their hair. [...]
I don't know how much of this applies to llamas, but here's what
I found at http://www.alpacanet.com/history.html:
For several thousand years, the Incas domesticated and
selectively bred Alpacas to produce a surprisingly large array of
colors and a very fine, dense fiber. During this time, Alpaca
fiber was virtually a secret from the rest of the world. Garments
made from Alpaca fiber were reserved for royalty. Peasants caught
wearing Alpaca clothing were punished, sometimes even killed.
In the 1600's, when the Spanish conquistadors invaded South
America, Alpacas were pushed to higher elevations because
Spaniards wanted available grazing lands for their beloved merino
sheep. However, in the mid-1800's, Alpaca fiber was "discovered"
by Europeans when an English textile merchant, Sir Titus,
realized its marvelous qualities.
Alpacas make a variety of sounds such as clicks and snorts but
are best known and loved for their humming. They make this
humming sound in a variety of situations such as when separated
from their herd, when one female gives birth, the other pregnant
mothers may hum to the delivering mother and new cria, and when
grazing, they hum in different tones.
I hope this helps.
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