Nettle Research

Did you know that the oldest surviving nettle fibre is about 3000 years old? And that the very first nettle cloth, found in Denmark about 3000 years ago, dated back to the Bronze Age (940 -750 BC), was processed to be a luxury item?

Excavated on Funen, off the coast of Denmark, the nettle cloth had been used to wrap the urn of a noble man, which was then placed in a bronze vessel. The nettle cloth was finely woven in plain weave, even by todays standards.
The nettle textile finds are kept in National Museum of Denmark. The full paper about the finds by C. Bergfjord, et al (2012) is open access and can be read in the scientific reports section of the journal site

Not only were textile archaeologists surprised to find that the fibre was European nettle fibre (Urtica Dioica), but also that the fibre actually was imported from Austria. So nettle was an ancient luxury item that was imported across Europe like wine or olives. 

Here is to nettle becoming a sustainable luxury material again!