[Ansteorra-textiles] A Mediaeval Sheep breed

L T ldeerslayer at yahoo.com
Fri May 17 10:27:58 PDT 2002

I did run across a reference that the introduction of Merino sheep
by the Romans improved the quality and colour of wool available.
I've been trying for 6 years to re-find the article I saw the reference
in to no avail...


> That is such a good question.  I personally haven't seen hard core info on
> how the breeds might REALLY have changed over time (no DNA studies or
> similar work).  What I do see in print are comments like "it's thought the
> breed has changed very little since.....".  We can all take that for what
> it's worth, I guess.  Along that line, shetlands theoretically were left
> mostly alone to fend for themselves for a long time, so the thinking is
> that they are pretty close to the original.   I know that some breeds have
> been dramatically affected by efforts to "improve" their fleece yields by
> infusing them with other breeds (the Navajo churro was almost lost that
> way, but they started back breeding them a few decades ago to return to the
> original breed).  Your point is very good, and it has tweaked my interest.
> I'll keep my eyes open for any info along that line and pass it on if
> anything crops up.
> Corrinne
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