Wednesday, June 12, 2013

THE SUMMER QUEEN Behind the Scenes 7

A Scarlet Woman!

Today's THE SUMMER QUEEN behind the scenes snippet is a bit shorter and less ferocious on dates and times than yesterday's.  However, it's an example of how the background research continues to contribute to the overall picture of daily life and the imagery portrayed. 

Biographers tells us that Eleanor was married in a scarlet dress. But that doesn't necessarily mean she went to her wedding dressed in red, and in THE SUMMER QUEEN, her gown is soft gold as per the Akashics.

Scarlet was a cloth, not a colour. It was a heavy weight woollen cloth of exceptionally fine weave and was the European counterpart to oriental silks. Top notch. Although frequently dyed a rich red, it came in a wide variety of colours - including blue, brown, gold (the colour not the metal) green, murrey (sludgy purplish colour) and white.  

The word 'scarlet' may have come from the Arabic 'siklat' which is a word for silk textiles,  and you will find this explanation on Wikipedia, but it may also have come from the Germanic word 'scaerlaken' which is connected with shearing and may be a reference to the cloth's nap.  The latter sounds very plausible indeed.  Whatever the origin, everyone in Europe used their country's variation of the word to describe the same cloth.

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