What is commonly known as Viking Knit, Viking Chain Knitting, Wire Weaving, Viking Wire Weaving, Trichinopoly and the technique in the book Ancient Wire, is a series of loops like cursive e's or l's. The wire crosses itself as it loops through previous rows.
Woven wire chains of this type have been found at Birka (ca
800 - 900 AD) and also in the Roman, Greek and Byzantine civilizations (4th
century BC to 1st century AD). Chains such as this can be found with
pendants, in multiple strands with adornments, for hanging items from diadems
and earrings, for earrings themselves, on cloak pins and as trim. Some
references that I have found can be seen here, and
my artifact from the Baltic part of Russia can be found here.
This diagram shows interconnected right side up and upside down U shaped loops, where each row would look something like n u n u n u n u n u n u n - one row of wire never crosses itself, but instead arcs up and down. In “The Trewhiddle Hoard” Wilson & Blunt say, "The chainwork of the scourge is manufactured in the Trichinopoly technique, a method of circular plaiting (known as tatting) still in use among school-children in England. The chain is plaited on nails through a hole bored in a piece of wood" - this wording sounds to me like spool knitting. I haven't tatted in a long time and my books for it are buried in my attic. However, I do remember using a shuttle to tat, so perhaps the definition of tatting has changed since 1961? or is different from England to America. I asked someone who does tatting, and they said that this type of chain is not what modern Americans call tatting.
I have not been able to find any other sources for the word
Trichinopoly prior to Wilson & Blunt's use of it. Trichinopoly is a
city in India, and that is all I can find, other than the recent use of the term
to describe woven chains. I have seen photos of similar looking chains
made in India, but either the photos were not clear enough to tell how they were
made, or they were loop in loop.
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