Textiles are seldom included within socio-economic interpretative frameworks on the ancient northern Mediterranean region although several recent studies have started to address this lacuna. The Archaic/Classical site of Ripacandida (Basilicata) is located in the southern Apennines and has yielded both textiles and tools used for textile production, providing an unprecedented opportunity to examine textile production and use at an indigenous south Italian site. This paper presents the results of the complimentary analyses of mineralised textile remains and textile tools (spindle whorls and loom weights) found in the cemetery of Ripacandida, which suggest that the textiles could have been produced using very similar tools. The unusual combination of the Greek textile weave (weft-faced tabby) and a characteristic Italic tablet-woven border in one of the textile fragments reflects a ‘hybrid’ textile culture, which is to date unique to Ripacandida. The finds are contextualised through anthropological and archaeological research of the site and its surrounding region, and compared with the new data on textile production in other Archaic indigenous and Greek settlements in order to evaluate the social and economic embeddedness of textile production in this small indigenous community of south Italy.
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